When Things Don’t Work

system outage

It is amazing how dependent we have become on technology and when things don’t work our (meaning me) frustration level rises to the highest levels. Recently, my Internet connection has been cutting out on me at the most inopportune times. I like to work late at night. It is quieter all around me. Being a night owl, I have my best thoughts in the wee hours. So I sat down at my computer and – zippo – no Internet connection. True, I could still type in WORD, but what about research and the emails I needed to do? Then there is the problem of printing. I have a wireless printer – so no WiFi, no printer. No ability to print what I had carefully typed out – on a deadline for a meeting – well, I’m sure you can understand my frustration.

Copying out everything by hand, sounded very unappealing and time consuming. So the next step is to call my ladyonphone&computercarrier and try to troubleshoot the problem.

Oh for the days you could call a helpline, and get a real person! I wasted a good quarter hour yelling into the phone, repeatedly telling the robot voices my phone number and what type of connection I have. When they asked for the name of the router I had, they would not recognize the name I gave them (Probably the original router they installed many years ago.). Of course, in between those delightful exchanges, I was told: I could troubleshoot most problems by disconnecting the modem’s power sources then reconnecting it (Which I had done ten times already); and that if I just went to the website, I could troubleshoot there (Well if I could get to a website, I wouldn’t be calling, would I?).

At last, I am routed to a real person with a suspiciously strong accent. Just as we are getting started, my printer miraculously starts working, and I realize the everything is working again. However, she says she has done nothing to fix it. After another 45 minutes of struggling to understand what she is saying, she has concluded that the problem of it cutting on and off is from the outside lines. “Have you had any heavy rains lately?” she asks. Ah – so she is in a foriegn country. Otherwise, she would have known we had a terrible storm yesterday evening. The conversation ends with the promise of a technician coming out to check the outside wiring. Hopefully, the technician is local and not coming from another foreign country.

In the meantime, I quickly print out my necessary papers and hope I get to my meeting on time. Always something.

Sigh, just as I was about to publish this – my Internet access was gone again. It may be tomorrow before I get this published. Sorry.

How do you deal with technical problems that get in the way of your work?

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