Na Na pinches her pennies

Shh… don't tell anyone I'm poor. They all think I'm living frugal and green just like everyone these days. This is a blog about a senior citizen living a frugal life, on a fixed income, in a low income food desert, and passing along knowledge from lessons learned. Some she learned from her Grandma Mama many years ago and some learned only a few days ago.

Still here

I’m sorry if I’ve caused any concern by my absence.  I’m fine but busy.  My daughter has had another surgery on her broken leg.  The tendon that moves the toes up for walking was exposed so they did a skin graft.  She is back home now.  I’ve been helping her.  

Whew, I had no idea how frustrating it would be to switch from one phone & internet company to another and to change email addresses.  Changing login information and email subscriptions of several websites I use frequently has been very time consuming!  In order to switch I first had to remember what sign in names I had used and then remember the passwords.  Those I couldn’t remember meant going through the steps of recovering username and password.  Some websites I had signed up with several years ago and others were more recent.  I’m not complaining because its a good idea to change these on a regular basis.  So far I’ve gotten the most important ones switched with all new sign in names and passwords.  I wrote all of them onto file cards to keep.  I knew I had used several websites regularly but I was surprised by the total number.  I also took the time to re-subscribe to blogs I had un-subscribed back several months ago when I had a terrible computer virus and didn’t want to chance spreading it around.

I’m very disappointed with Spectrum.  I guess I traded one horrible phone & internet company for another horrible phone & internet company.   Honestly there are days when I want to disconnect from the whole world of corporate greed and become a hermit.  Or maybe move to a country with not a single modern convenience in sight.  Ghee whiz, here I am talking about my frustration again.  Maybe I should work on an attitude adjustment and de-stress myself.

When I moved here to this house it was already wired by the previous owners who used Spectrum.  All the ugly cable plugs are still in the walls.  I paid a fee in advance for a technician to come set up my phone & internet service for me because tech things and I don’t work well together.  I thought it would save me time.  I’m an old lady who barely manages to use email and to write a blog post now and then.  I believed the tech person I was paying for would actually check to be sure everything was working properly.  What happened instead was the men came in, plugged a cord into the wall.  Ran that super long cord around the room to the computer where he plugged the other end.  He set two small boxes on the floor by the computer and plugged those in too.  He then handed me a small slip of paper with a wifi password on it and left.  No work order slip or paperwork of any kind.  Grrrr!  When I had asked if he was going to set up the computer he tells me they don’t do that.  So now I’m wondering exactly what the heck it was I paid for?  Its seems that basically I paid for a very expensive delivery service which should be free.  Its a good thing I had a surge protector with enough places to plug in everything.

I did call Spectrum customer service.  Grrrr!  Very disappointed to get a robot asking questions.  I really hate the sound of a phone robot’s fake typing.  Its sound is like that of chalk screeching on a blackboard.  When I finally got through to a live person thankfully he spoke without an accent.  He offered to help me over the phone to set everything up.  I admit I was a bit rude to the man when I angrily asked him just what the heck I had paid for with my advance payment if I have to do it myself?  Eventually I relented and let him talk me through the steps of setting up my phone and internet which didn’t help at all.  I kept getting error messages.  He transfers me to a specialist person where I repeat all my information AGAIN.  This person also talks me through several steps and again I get error messages.  I told this person I wasn’t angry at him but I wanted to know just what the heck did I pay for when I agreed to the fee in advance for set up?  He gives me an appointment day to have a technician come back to my house to see that my phone and internet are working.

Later I realized the appointment was for the same day and time my daughter was having the surgery on her broken leg.  I cancelled the appointment and did the best I could to make the internet work.  Its still not right because it frequently times out on me.  Its frustrating to be typing a draft post and when I use the save button I’m given a message there is no internet connection.  My wifi printer doesn’t work either.  My nephew has agreed to come to my house and help me this coming weekend.  I do intend to file a complaint with Spectrum hopefully to get my money back if I can .  How likely is that gonna happen?  Big money companies like that don’t give refunds.

I’m beginning to believe a good phone company does not exist anymore.  I believe its all a part of that “dumbing down” of our young people thang.  Young people who have never experienced good customer service and are not taught either are not going to care if people complain.

Ok, time for me to go help my daughter.

30 comments on “Still here

  1. Linda
    March 2, 2019

    I don’t have a land line anymore, and refuse to pay to watch TV, have an old antenna on the roof, after a big wind have to go out there and turn it with a pipe wrench to get the stations in again, but I am not paying to watch TV. I have AT&T internet, and when I have a problem, I call one of my son’s and let him deal with it. He works for AT&T, has been there for years. he know just how to get the answers he wants to fix whatever problems I have. I guess they talk nice to employees. When he no longer works there, have no idea what I will do.

    • Anita
      March 7, 2019

      Its always nice to have an insider to work things out for you. I have a rabbit ear antenna for my tv.

  2. Gloria
    February 24, 2019

    Hi Anita,

    I hope your daughter is healing up after her surgery.

    After reading about your internet issues, it brought up memories of what we went through when we first got internet here. Our neighborhood is off the beaten path so it took a while for DSL to be available. We were able to get it hooked up but after a year of constantly being timed out or dropped and then calling for tech support every time it happened, we finally found out that even though we were able to hook up to DSL we are too far from the relay station to have a good steady connection.

    When I would call I would always ask for an email confirming that I called and a report number to refer back to if I had to call again. Because I had a record of all the times I called in with problems, I was able to get a 15 month credit applied to my phone bill that paid for the phone bill for the next year or so.

    About 6 months after that we were able to get cable internet and it would work incredibly fast then stop, we had to have many different techs come out to fix wiring problems that previous techs made, every time they came out we had them write up a sheet of what they did so the next person would be able to read through everything that was done when they were sent out, after a;most a year everything was running smoothly. It was frustrating to get all of the kinks worked out but worth it.

    Hang in there.

    • Anita
      February 25, 2019

      Thanks Gloria. I believe the problems have finally been worked out. I even have the personal phone number of one of the techs in case anything happens again.

  3. catherine young
    February 22, 2019

    I’m sorry I jumped in with the internet issue first. I am wishing your daughter well and Hoping you stay healthy and strong, as you help her get on her feet. That is the most important thing of all that you and your loved ones are well. That your daughter is going through thesemrfuval issues is a rough go, and I m hoping she gets through this as well as possible.

    • Anita
      February 24, 2019

      We have faith she will be fine. Her younguns have become quite the little helpers as they fetch things mommie can’t reach. I believe they fully understand her big boo boo is serious.

  4. Cath young
    February 22, 2019

    File a complaint with the FCC. That was the only thing that got Xfinity to pay attention to me. Got a bit of recompense too.

    Though that was three years ago and they’ve gone back to their shiftless and greedy ways. I’m going to have to do it again.

    • Anita
      February 24, 2019

      I’ve been thinking of doing that too. The FCC should know even if I don’t have ATT anymore.

  5. Carol
    February 22, 2019

    Dearest Anita,

    I understand thinking we seniors have to have an attitude adjustment, however, put it into a perspective. If by chance our entire electrical system should be wiped out, we old timers and preppers will know how to survive. Common sense and wisdom is not in great demand these days. My daughter in Myrtle Beach, SC told me when I write to my 9 year old granddaughter I have to print!. Cursive hand writing is no longer taught in schools. How in heavens name can they read the historical documents of this country, address an envelope in a formal way, write an RSVP and so on. The “dumbimg down of America” is so true. Did you see the videos where teenagers could not answer a dial phone or use a hand can opener? What has happened to our country?
    And how about them texting at the dinner table?
    Anita, as Bette Midler sang, “Thank God for you”, and the rest of the seniors like you.

    Love and peace,
    Carol Gabriel

    • Anita
      February 24, 2019

      I like to think that as the economy grows worse that those of us who live a simple frugal life do become more valuable. I do struggle sometimes but that only makes for good survival practice. I have not seen the video but I’ve watched my grands try to understand how my landline phone works. I have to hide the phone from Spanky because he is at a stage where he loves to push buttons and turn knobs. I have to remove the knobs from the stove too. I’ve seen people texting each other while setting in the same room or in the same house. That’s so sad and just more dumbing down of America. I’m very happy to say Ladybug is learning cursive writing so she can read all my oldest journals.

  6. Marybeth
    February 21, 2019

    Hope your daughter is back on her feet soon.

  7. Jack Cowart
    February 21, 2019

    Holy Cow! Your poor DD has been thru the “wringer”…Hope she has a quick recovery from yet another surgery…And to think this happened to her “out of the blue”(an accident) …is scary.
    Sorry to hear about the “tech problems”…I’m a bit younger than you and I have a heck of a time…so I can only imagine what you go thru. I have a similar problem with Dear Mother…only her villain is Verizon. I swear I don’t think they even care about the “landline customers”. She doesn’t have internet and has no desire for it. She has cable but has heard awful things about Comcast….So she continues to pay about $90 a month to Verizon…for a landline with all the bells and whistles. Drives me crazy… I also will share the I had a very positive experience with Best Buy/Geek Squad…A while back we paid them to install a new wi-fi system…The young man that came was : on time…polite…knowledgeable…quick and explained everything about our system. It was a great experience….I’d do it again…Maybe give those guys a jingle…-Jestjack

    • Anita
      February 24, 2019

      Hi there jestjack. Your mother is better? Hmm, the geek squad is an option I hadn’t thought about. Thanks for suggesting it. Lots of similarity between your mother and me. It took me several years and utter frustration before I finally decided to leave AT&T. I’m the last one in my family to switch. Now my 1 and 2 year old grands are asking me to get a smart phone so they can “face time” with me. I respond by saying Na Na can’t give big hugs and kiss cheeks in face time. I need to be there in person.

      • jestjack
        February 25, 2019

        Thanks for asking…Dear Mother is better…Having trouble with her old vehicle now. She wants to continue to drive but funds are limited. We are trying to figure out how to fix it without going bankrupt. She is set on keeping Verizon landline…and Verizon will not allow her to “downgrade” into a cheaper plan…so $90 it is…crazy…-Jestjack

        • Anita
          February 26, 2019

          I’m happy to hear she is doing better. I know how your mother feels about changing. I also refused to change phone company for years even when the cost kept rising. The older generation was raised to be brand loyal even when it meant paying more. Giving up on brand loyalty was a hard lesson for me to learn. Older folks like us prefer to stay with the “familiar” because its less stressful than learning about new technology. She will have to learn for herself that brand loyalty doesn’t work anymore. When she gets frustrated enough with the issues or the price becomes high enough to be uncomfortable I believe she’ll change. Perhaps when the choice becomes between having a phone or having a car she may think about a change.

  8. craftytadpole
    February 21, 2019

    How frustrating!

    Hope your daughter is healing well.

  9. Leslie Saunders
    February 20, 2019

    Glad to hear from you,as I was getting concerned. We moved to the mountains of Az.,and your description, matches the type of companies we deal with here. It’s a delicate balance between keeping,your sense of humor,and getting them to do what they are paid to do.

    • Anita
      February 24, 2019

      Thank you.

  10. Jackie
    February 20, 2019

    Am so glad you are back! I have missed you! I am sorry about your tech troubles. I feel very vulnerable when that stuff messes up! I like simple. Hope your daughter is healing nicely. Take care!

    • Anita
      February 24, 2019

      I believe many of us like simple but we can’t use what is not available. I believe my daughter will be fine. It will just take time.

  11. Margie in Toronto
    February 20, 2019

    Glad to hear that you are ok – I was starting to worry. But so sorry to hear that your daughter has had a bit of a set back – she must be very grateful for all your assistance. I hope she starts to feel better soon.
    I feel your pain when it comes to technology – and being treated like an idiot never helps. After a couple of very frustrating experiences I now never let the technicians leave until I understand exactly how something works and I’m confident that I can work everything on my own. They can roll their eyes all they want – I’m paying for the service!
    Can’t offer any advice on another provider as I’m in Canada – good luck with it all.

    • Anita
      February 24, 2019

      My daughter is constantly telling me how much she appreciates my help. Makes me happy.

  12. Lilli
    February 20, 2019

    When I signed up with Charter a few months ago, they charged me an extra 50 dollars to lock my bill in at 45.00 for 2 years. I was furious because that was never mentioned when I called in and bought their service. It takes 5 to 6 minutes to get a real person on the line. Sadly with my southern accent and their foreign accents it makes conversations near impossible. Reading a script doesn’t mean you understand it . I at least knew this time to do my own self installation. which was plugging The device in .The only good thing is that once my service is running I rarely have a problem with them . Well except if you call them making billing mistakes each month not a problem. Oh, let’s not forget I lose my service for up to two hours almost each night when they are working on the system. There just seems to be no winning. After evaluating my electric bill , the electric big in the house appears to be my internet modem box and the tv. There’s not a problem unplugging the tv when not in use , but the internet is difficult to get synched back up if you turn it off. I have enough real struggles in old age without dealing with this. Hope you are warm and snug. I will email you in a couple weeks. I hope to have good news to share with you.

    • Anita
      February 24, 2019

      I’ll try to remember to do my own installation next time and do as Jestjack suggested to call the geek squad to do everything else. So now you are stuck with Charter for two years? The two modems that replaced the one from before also draw alot of electricity. I would love to be able to unplug the computer and such but it causes all kinds of issues. I’m anxious to hear your good news.

  13. Linda in NE
    February 20, 2019

    We used to have DirecTV and when AT&T bought it service did not improve. My beef with satellite companies (other than the steady increases in price) is that they never update their equipment. And their installation people haven’t a clue. When we had DISH and finally got access to local channels they had to put up a new satellite dish. Before they got out of town we lost reception & I had to call to get someone to look at it. They gave me an appointment for THREE WEEKS later and sent back the same incompetents that had put it up originally. Once again reception went out in about 15 minutes. I call again and say I DO NOT want the same incompetents back again. Finally they send someone whose van actually said DISH Network on the side and he had his own ladder!! He climbs up on the roof, looks things over, readjusts the dish and tightens things down good. The problem was that the other two idiots hadn’t tightened most of the bolts & screws down so the weight of the dish caused it to sag out of alignment within minutes. I should have known the first two installers were useless when they didn’t even have a ladder long enough to reach the roof. My best to your daughter.

    • Anita
      February 24, 2019

      My daughter had direct tv 11 years ago when it was here in Louisville. She had trouble with it so called for service. They told her to check for leaves or branches on the dish and clear them off. She immediately cancelled her service. Told them no way was she going buy a ladder to get on her roof at eight months pregnant because they couldn’t do their job. I have faith my daughter will be fine.

  14. Teresa
    February 20, 2019

    You poor frustrated love,I so feel your “pain”…one (just one?) of the indignities of not belonging to the digital age is that one is made to feel so stupid ,when youngsters seem so capable. I comfort myself with thinking that the skills of survival that you/I/older ones have and have gained through life and experience are surely as good as and as useful as knowing which knob or button to push.is that your daughter in the bed, is that in hospital? I’m in England
    Teresa

    • Anita
      February 20, 2019

      Yes, that is my daughter prepped to go into surgery. She was smiling but just as I took the picture the sheet fell in front of her face. No more camera memory space to take another one. You put your finger right on the problem. I’m made to feel stupid when I know I’m not. I wonder how many of them would know how to use a ham radio or a reel to reel tape recorder. Ooo, or how to operate a Morse code telegraph machine. I learned the code when I was in school.

  15. Kathi
    February 20, 2019

    so sorry for all your troubles Anita. I’ve got tv/phone/internet thru Comcast now. I was rather pleased with the way they connected everything. a bit ago my cable box went out. the fella came with a new one, NO extra charge. Said it was their EQUIPMENT that failed so. no charge. there ARE good people out there, They are just VERY DIFFICULT to find.

    • Anita
      February 20, 2019

      Yes Kathi I know good people are hard to find. 🙂 Thank God I found you so many years ago my friend. 🙂 We don’t have Comcast here anymore. Just AT&T or Spectrum. Today I found out that at&t actually owns Spectrum as well as many of the other cable & internet companies nation wide. They also own many popular cable tv channels and news channels. Here is the link to see the 98 different companies at&t owns now that it bought Time Warner and re-named it Spectrum. Scroll down the page a little way to find the list.
      98 companies owned by at&t

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This entry was posted on February 20, 2019 by in HOW MUCH IS ENOUGH, JUST THINKING, TODAY STUFF FOR YESTERDAY MINDS.

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