ATT Hell

I’ve spent half the day in ATT hell. Our landline is buzzing so badly you can barely make out any conversation at all but in order to switch over to the wireless system, I have to connect to the correct service dept within ATT. They have the most complicated automated telephone system in the galaxy and you almost never end up with a human or on the same branch twice. Probably one reason for that is my system is so noisy that it screws up their answering system. I start to twitch anytime someone suggests I switch anything at all over to ATT but unfortunately they have the most reliable system in the jungle and try as I might to avoid them, it becomes inevitable. So after 4 hours of trying, I’m still not able to activate the new system and deactivate the old landline. I will say the wireless box installed quickly and easily and is indicating a good strong signal. It just won’t let me call out until this activation procedure is accomplished and I can’t get a straight answer -between the phone line noise and the heavily accented operator – as to exactly when it will happen. A couple of hours into the process one tech assistant told me that after I plugged in the system, it would automatically activate in 90 minutes. That was technically believable so I waited 2 hours before calling for help again. When I explained that the 90 minutes came and went with no improvement, this new person said she’d never heard of any 90 minute auto hook and that we had to interface with the activation dept.

Update – it’s activated and I must confess, it’s the clearest it’s ever been. We have 5 bars of signal strength and no noise, no buzzing, no crackling. I figured out how to retrieve messages in voice mail which is slightly more complicated than the landline system because you have to enter a password. The only thing I don’t like so far is that it has a call holding feature which was optional on the landline. I hate being interrupted with background beeps when I’m talking to someone else – very annoying. Maybe there’s a button to push that cuts off the new incoming call. I wonder if the interrupt signal goes away when the caller is leaving a message?? I’ve never been a cell phone person but I guess this system is a true cell phone that looks like a landline system. I also have to get used to always using the 10 digit phone number. One positive feature – we can take our “home” phone with us to the beach or any place that has a power outlet and is in an ATT service area.

The other good news is that Tom took a look at the blog software and showed me a couple of shortcuts that got me back to where the earlier version was in terms of posting and adding media without interim steps. Piece of cake. It’s really great to have an in-house IT department. Between Nancy and me, we always seem to find a way to stress the computer. Many of our problems stem from the fact that we are nominally offline and only go online when we have a specific reason whereas I guess most people are just online continuously. Programs like the blog program just assume you’re online while you’re doing your creative work whereas I do it all offline and then post when it’s done.

Heading for the beach next week. Hope the blues are biting. Looking forward to this particular trip because we’ll be joined by our long time friends from Utah, the Stireman’s, for a few days. Maybe the next post will have some fish pictures. If you don’t see any, it may be that I forgot the camera so don’t just assume I’m striking out.

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