A Link To Centuries

knockingAll I want for Christmas is a “no soliciting” sign. I had one before but a solicitor stole it from my door. I know because I was inside ignoring them when it happened. And, true story, they were selling for the company where I worked. Unbelievable.

In the meantime…

It was a Saturday afternoon. My wife and I were hanging out in the living room with the cats. I wasn’t wearing pants. Suddenly, there came a sound from the door. The cats ran away. The moment was lost.

You know that knock? The one that says, “Hey, it’s me.” It goes like this:

Knock knock!
Knock knock knock knock knock knock.
Knock knock!

I heard that sound and cocked an ear. “Who the hell can that be?” I gasped.

No worries. It was a just a salesperson.

My wife cracked the door about an inch and gave a weary greeting in the form of a question. “Yeah?” We can’t open the door any more than that or the cats try like to hell to escape.

“I’m so-and-so with the goddamned phone company. You may have noticed our trucks in the neighborhood lately. We’ve been installing fiber optic internet and your house is eligible.”

Dammit. I’m actually interested. I loves me some internet. Wait one minute and I’ll put on pants so we can delve into this a bit more.

There! Pants are so damn restricting, aren’t they? Anyway, you were saying?

Yes, yes, yes. We’re with the local cable company and we hates them, my precious. Give us anything in the ballpark and we’ll be the easiest sale you’ve ever made. It’ll also be helpful if you know your ass from a hole in the ground. I work from home as a web developer so I know a thing or two about the way the internet works.

The pitch? “High speed internet” for only $35 a month.

I didn’t just fall off the turnip truck yesterday. I know this is something like a 12-month deal and then can go up, yada yada yada. But still, that sounded pretty good for fiber optic.

“What’s the speed?” I asked.

“Seven,” she said.

“Seven what?”

“I don’t know how to explain it any better than that. But it’s fast.”

“How does it compare to cable?”

“Way faster. Better.”

“Well, let me put it like this. I currently pay about $80 a month for 50 Mbps to the cable assholes of all time. What’s is yours? 7 Mbps. Some higher thingy? What is the unit of speed?”

“I’ll draw you a picture,” she responded. It looked a little something like this:

Cable vs DSL“Look,” she said. “I can’t explain it any better than this. Here’s a cross-section of cable vs our high speed DSL. What it means is that seven is faster than 50. That’s because cable connections are shared by the neighborhood demand and DSL is exclusively reserved for you.”

I thought it sounded like horseshit but, on the other hand, yeah, fiber optic sounded fast.

45 minutes after her arrival she finally handed me something to sign. There was a big box entitled “High Speed Internet” and boxes for the “Internet Connection Speed.” In there, she had checked a box that said, “Up to 7 Mbps.”

“What the fuck is this?” I demanded. “I told you I already have 50 Mbps. How the hell is 7 better than 50 in the same damn units?”

I grabbed a pitchfork and chased her down the driveway. “Get the hell out of here”

I sure wish I had that “no soliciting” sign. Now I’m another 45 minutes closer to death. Thanks a lot.

Bringeth forth thy pith and vinegar

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