mangaroo (mangaroo) wrote,

infinite loop

I pick up the phone this morning to let my boss know I plan to work from home to complete a project. I have no dial tone. I move the phone to a different jack and still have no dial tone. I email my boss, explaining that I've shelved my original plan and now might be late in order to troubleshoot this telecommunications issue, oh, and can he call in to leave a message on my answering machine (so I can check if it's the phone or the line causing my problem...first time my embarrassment at still HAVING an answering machine has been balanced by its usefulness, since I don't have another phone to test). Boss emails back that he tried to call but can't get through to leave a message.

Okay, now we're cooking. I log into AT&T's site to report the problem, and the site first directs me to a troubleshooting guide. Because in the 21st century, we are ALL telecommunications experts, dammit. The first step is to access some kind of external jack (the "Telephone Network Interface" box) to determine if there's a dial tone there. I live in an apartment building and I'm pretty sure I'm not supposed to mess with equipment outside my residence, so I skip this step. Then I have to shut down my modem to see if the DSL filter is interfering. No dial tone. Then they tell me to unplug ALL ELECTRICAL EQUIPMENT to see if anything else is interfering with the line. Ummm...say what now? I have not plugged in anything new since the phone was last working, and since I am entirely sure I will not be unplugging my refrigerator, I decide to skip this step and proceed to request a repair.

The second required field in the repair request is a contact number. My phone doesn't work, so I provide my work number. Except the repair -- which doesn't offer any kind of appointment or service window -- requires that someone be on site to provide access if necessary, so I won't be going into the office today. And I don't have a phone, so I can't call my office voicemail to see if they have left a message there.

But it gets better.

Now that I might have a repairman in my home, I have to tidy up and hide the manga. So I take the garbage downstairs (and use the opportunity to check out the apartment's "Telephone Network Interface," which is not a box but a wide open circuit panel and seems to offer no jacks for testing, even if I could identify which wire was mine). While I'm down there, I also notice that this panel is located inside our locked garage. And the only way for a service technician to let me know that they're on site and need to be let into the garage would be...anyone? Bueller? That's right, by PHONE.

Edit: As of noon today, I have had no DSL access, either. I finally walked in to work to discover that AT&T had closed my trouble ticket, claiming the repair was complete. I called the technician who claimed to have come to my building to fix the phone line (he also claimed that he had knocked on the door to my apartment -- anyone who has seen my apartment knows there is nowhere I could be in that place without hearing a knock on my door). At any rate, I informed him that I had neither phone nor internet now, and pointed out that I could not be AT my contact number (office) and at my home (no phone) to let him in. So now he has asked me to provide him with the number for the building management...which is at home. So the earliest I can get that to him is tomorrow. Since this is a 3-day weekend, I suspect I'm going to be without internet or phone until Tuesday at the very earliest.
Tags: my miserable life, productivity (or lack thereof), rl
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