Having slid into the holiday trough, I now find myself struggling to get back to a normal routine. Being self-employed, I sometimes find my boss to be kind of a pushover.
What’s ironic is how hard it was to relax and enjoy the day in the first place, all these worries about food and presents and people stopping by to look at my disheveled house.
Now I find myself saying, “Oh what the hell, it’s Christmas…” about everything. Screw chores! To hell with cleaning! It’s Christmas! Etc.
Unfortunately, the bills won’t be screwed, isn’t that a fact? As I was cleaning all the scraps of wrapping paper and string off my desk Christmas morning, I found a Comcast bill due the next day – yesterday. Nothing to do but load the dogs up in the F-150 and drive to Comcast to pay the bill.
It was an account I’d opened for my son, and he was paying me for it monthly, and I’d pay the bill. He thought he’d like to try having internet service, since he still has the old computer he used for college, but wasn’t really sure if he’d need it, so we signed him up for one of those trial offers, $24 a month for so many months. We decided that if it wasn’t worth the upgraded price – about $60 a month – when the offer was over, we’d cancel. He had decided it wasn’t.
When I approached the clerk, I handed him my bill and told him I’d like to cancel the account. Poor kid, the front of his face went into an avalanche.
I know, Comcast pushes their employees to wheedle the customers. They push them right out the door, as far as I can see, cause we pay our own Comcast bill there a few times a year, and we never see the same employee twice. Comcast probably gets mad if a clerk doesn’t talk people out of cancelling – and try to sell them more service, I’ve seen that almost every time I’ve been in. As I expected, the poor guy tried not only to talk me out of cancelling the internet service, but signing up for the expensive TV service. I stayed firm – falling back on “Juanita chatter” – guaranteed to make anybody forget what they’d been thinking when I walked in. He finally threw in the towel and turned to his console. Just as he was finishing the transaction, he suddenly remembered to ask me for my ID.
I know, they have to ask for your ID. I know people who would gleefully cancel their ex-spouse’s account monthly if it were possible. But I had, of course, not brought my purse, the other point of this outing being a dog walk through questionable terrain. I will never leave the house without my ID again. I went out to the truck to report – we would have to drive home and get the purse and drive all the f-ing way back to Comcast. There was no time to send a check, and I didn’t want to pay for another month service at the new rate.
That was the first time I’d been out for more than a dog walk for about five days. Town is pretty dead right now – not only are the college students gone, but all the school workers are also apparently gone. School is a dominant industry in our town, that’s why two local school bonds passed without a whimper – most of the people that vote here are public workers hooked up to the taxpayer’s teat like a pack of junkies hooked up to an intravenous fix. But of course, my Comcast clerk had to be at work at about 8am to take payments from people who swear at him, accuse him of stuff, and are generally rude.
So, we went home and got my purse, drove all the way back, Mr. and Mrs. Barkerson on the lookout for helpless old ladies with shit-zus. But I walked right in there with a big old smile on my face and waited for my clerk, who greeted me just as positively, regardless of the nature of my business. I must say, he was a nice kid, it put some pink in my day.
I like that expression, “paying forward” – I don’t mean, pay for some other person’s coffee down at Dutch Brothers, I mean, be nice to one person so they will be nice to the guy behind you. Jerry’s children say “What goes around, comes around…”