Getting Rid of the Cable Guy?

I didn’t watch the Super Bowl this year. I didn’t even look online for a link to all the Super Bowl ads. I had read that Jim Carrey was going to reprise his role as The Cable Guy for a Verizon ad, and only recently watched it. It wasn’t until a week or so ago that I have been forced into the position of ditching cable. Here’s that story.

If I am being honest with you, there are very few shows that I watch on TV. As a matter of fact, when the TV is on, it is usually playing PBS shows, Nick Jr. or Disney Jr. for Ella. We have a DVR that Sam records Grey’s Anatomy, This is Us, and her shows, but it is mostly filled with Ella’s shows.

For Christmas, my dad got Ella her own tablet. When connected to the internet, she can play Alphabet games, watch PBS shows, and listen to kid songs. Without the net, her choices become limited.

Sam and I connect to the Wi-Fi when we are at home so we don’t use all of our data on our cell plan. We can watch videos, listen to music, make phone or video calls, and search Facebook all while connected.

Recently, we started to notice the internet would go out for a few minutes. Then we started to notice that the DVR would stop midway through a show we were watching saying the internet was out. Our Amazon Alexa started to tell us, “I’m having trouble connecting to the internet. There may be a problem with your router.”

It got to the point where the internet was out more than it was working. I finally gave the cable company a call. I explained what was going on and they ran some diagnostic tests while I was on the phone. “We show you currently have three devices connected to your internet.” I laughed out loud and said, “They may be connected, but the internet isn’t working.” Then, almost on cue, Alexa once again spouted off that she was having trouble connecting to the internet. Thank you, Alexa.

The woman on the phone stated that she could probably get me a new Wi-Fi gateway in about 14 days. I told her that was not acceptable. I finally got her to get one out within 5 days. When it finally arrived, I had to download the app on my phone and log in. Once logged in, it searched for the router after I scanned that little square “Q” code thingy and found it. It then said it would finish the set up, which would take “10 minutes.”

After about 18 minutes, the app flashed a message that said, “We cannot complete your set up at this time. Please try again.” I tried a few more times to no avail. I had to break down and call the cable company again. I spent about 35 minutes on the phone and the set up was eventually complete.

A day after the new equipment arrived, my wife got the monthly bill from the cable company. It had suddenly jumped up about $60! That was all it took. I was furious! There was no indication that there was a charge for the new equipment. Hell, it was their equipment that we were renting. If it broke, they should have sent us a new one at no charge, right?! So why is it all of a sudden that much higher? It’s anybody’s guess.

When we first signed up with the company, all we really wanted was internet. We were talked into getting the “bundle” with a home phone (which we never use), the internet, and cable. In all honesty, all we need is internet. We stream half of the shows we watch anyway.

I have yet to call them to cancel our service because I am hoping that I can nab something through Verizon (where we already have our cell phones). It would be nice to combine internet and cell phones into one bill, which would probably bring the cost down a lot. I’m working on that.

One final funny story involving the cable company. They told me to make sure that I returned the old equipment when the new piece arrived. I could send it back in the box it came in or drop it at a local store. If I did not do this within 7 days, we would be charged for said piece of equipment.

I threw the broken one in the new box and took it back to the store over the weekend. Sam had told me to make sure I got a receipt in case they tried to charge us for it. I walk into the store and a gal barely looks up and me and says I can place the box on the counter next to her. I do and ask her for a receipt. She hands me what I think is a receipt and tells me to stand in line to talk to someone.

URGH! All I wanted to to was drop this thing off and go. Now I am waiting in line to be called over just to get a receipt. When I arrive at the front of the line a big overly smiley guy calls me over. I hand him the paper I was given and he asks what my “business” was with them. I told him I was bring a router back and all I needed was a receipt to prove I brought it back.

Guy Smiley asks a few questions about our address and such and then begins the sales pitch. “How are you fixed for cell service?” “What about your cable package?” “We can put your cell phones, tablets, cable package, home phone, internet, and blah blah blah ….” It takes all I can muster to not tell this guy to stop. “The more stuff you add to the package the less it costs you a month…” Brilliant.

By now he has had my receipt in his hand for who knows how long. I want to just grab it and go! “No, thanks” “No, I’m good.” “No, we don’t need that.” “I’m really not interested in that…” He will not get the hint. I finally tell him that I don’t make any kind of decisions without my wife. With that, he finally gives me the last ditch “I can get you this deal … BUT ONLY UNTIL MONDAY.” Yeah, I’m sure.

He handed me his card. I think he put his cell phone, the store phone, his home phone, and the number to his third cousin once removed on the card so that would be able to reach him. It was only then, that he finally handed me my receipt! I was exhausted by the time I walked out of there.

It will bring me no greater joy that to make the phone call to cancel my cable service.

Emotional Weekend Recap

It is taking all that is in me to write a blog today. I don’t feel like writing. I’m numb today.

All weekend long I struggled with whether or not to proceed with something. It is something that has weighed very heavy on my heart. It is something that comes with risks no matter what I decided to do. I have spent three entire therapy sessions (one I scheduled purposely) discussing it with my therapist. No matter how much I talked about it, no matter how I looked at it, no matter what the pros and cons were, I still don’t feel like I was ready to make a decision. Based on previous blogs, you can probably figure out what I am talking about.

It doesn’t really even matter what it is. I wrestled to make a decision and now I am wrestling with the decision I made. I am literally numb. I am feeling many emotions today – fear, anger, sadness, uncertainty, worry, and so many more. As I stared at the computer screen, I wondered just what the hell I wanted to write about. So I grabbed my phone and looked back at some of the pictures from the weekend and figured maybe I should at least talk about the positives.


First of all, I got to spend the entire weekend with my wife and daughter. It was an extended weekend for my wife and I, and as a bonus we both got Tuesday off. We actually had time to sit on the couch and watch shows we had on the DVR, which is something we rarely get to do. Ella had us laughing a lot this weekend. Recently, Sam’s folks bought her an easel. It has a chalkboard, whiteboard, place for paper, etc… We thought that this would be great for her to draw on. We haven’t let her paint yet, but she can color on it and uses the chalkboard a lot. Up until now, the sidewalk chalk had to stay outside. Now she has it on the easel, which isn’t always a good thing ….

This probably won’t stop her from drawing on the furniture … but it was worth a try!

On Sunday, I got together with two of my close friends from high school – Margaret and Chris. It was probably a couple months ago that a picture of the three of us came up in Facebook Memories. I think it said the picture was taken 10 years ago! While I’ve gotten together with them separately since, it had been that long since we all got together. So we met at Margaret’s house and she had a cook out. The town was hopping because the peach festival was going on. I got their late, because I thought we were supposed to get together on Monday. No matter, we all got to sit around and chat, reminisce, laugh, and enjoy each other’s company. Before we wrapped up the day, I said we had to get another picture! I sent the picture to both of them, and each of us posted it on our pages. Margaret joked around and said to crop the picture more …. so I did….

Really a great picture of us ….

Sometimes, I have to do things just to take my mind off the crap that is on social media. I am so sick of the politics, hatred, and sadness that is often the subject of posts on Facebook. During conversation at Margaret’s, the topic turned to some silliness I have been posting. I did this last September, too. I know it is stupid, but it truly makes me laugh and I share to save my sanity.

One of the Three Stooges pages I follow on Facebook takes Shemp Howard’s picture and Photoshops them on other pictures. The can be movie stills, magazine covers, etc. They call the entire month of September – SHEMPtember! So every day this month, I find a silly pic from their page and post it. This remains one of my favorites, and I am sure my musical followers will get a good laugh from it, too….

The Shemptations!!!!!

30 days of stupidity? Yeah, probably. I’ll take the stupidity and enjoy the laugh over the other things I am feeling any day.

The rest of the weekend falls into the area that I’d rather not think about ….

I hope you had an enjoyable Labor Day Weekend.