Usually, I leave my conclusions or morals (if one exists) for the end of a story. Today, I will introduce my piece by writing, “Lying is a good thing when dealing with Comcast.”
My wife and I heart T.V.. It’s nothing to be ashamed of unless you decide that television is more important than your spouse. That’s a problem. We share a collective bargaining agreement as to what we watch and don’t watch together, and we have a television set upstairs and downstairs. Thus, there is little to bicker about when she wishes to watch football and I wish to watch Desperate Housewives. By the way, I love reading a good book or article, but c’mon . . . T.V. is brain dead wonderful. A half hour sitcom can make me forget about the asshole cutting me off on the freeway that day. And, for most of you people out there who claim you don’t watch T.V., you are mostly liars. You just watch the same shows as us on your laptop, so get over it.
Desperately needing two new remote controls, as ours are worn to the nub, I made a call to Comcast to order our extended hands. It was a little trickier than expected. Once gaining contact with Customer Service, I was greeted by a man who sounded like someone easy to communicate with, and he genuinely seemed interested in helping our plea. Dealing with Comcast is not genuinely simple, but I had my hopes up this time.
Indeed, he did wish to assist me, but there was a minor glitch. Since my wife’s name was the only one on the contract, he could only speak to her. She signed up years before we were married. Shot down by Comcast again. Knowing my wife would be devastated to hear the news, (she has been asking me to do this for about the last four years) I prepared myself for a profanity laced tirade directed (mostly) at Comcast. Now, a simple solution would be telling my wife she has to call. This is where I really wanted to help. You see, my wife works 13 hour shifts at the steel mill and when she comes home, filthy, sweaty, smelly and surly, the last thing she wants to do is call Comcast. Therefore, I thought I’d try something I’d never done before. Posing as my wife, I would call Comcast back.
Luckily, someone different answered from Customer Service, so I had that in my favor. Also, I thought it was in my favor that a man answered again. Believe it or not, men tend to be a little more sensitive regarding critical moments in a person’s life when said person loses or destroys their remote control. Richard, from Customer Service, was my man that day.
Richard: Customer Service, this is Richard, how may I help you?
Me: (Keep in mind, I decided not to attempt a woman’s voice. I thought I’d play my lie straight.) Hello Richard, I need to order two new remote controls. I’ve had an account with you for years.
Richard: (Sounding like he was having a good day or close to ending his shift.) Ok, no problem. I just need some information. Last name please.
Richard: Ok, Mr. Gannon, first name?
Me: Oh, that’s Mrs. Gannon. I’m sorry, I have laryngitis so I sound a little silly. My first name is Brittney, but my maiden name was Young. I believe that is what the account is under.
Richard: (Sounding a little rattled) Uh, ok, I’m very sorry ma’am…….um…..alrighty, here we are. Date of birth?
(BOOM! This was an easy one since I pick up my wife’s medications at the local pharmacy on a daily basis, and they always ask for her birth date.)
Richard: Great. Last four digits of your Social Security?
(uh oh……I have no idea what her S.S.N. is)
Me: Uh….yeah, I need to get out of bed to get that……. I’m sorry, I just don’t have it off the top of my head right now and I’m feeling a little……
Richard: Wait, it’s ok, how about your mother’s maiden name?
Me: Gonzales….and that’s with a Z.
Richard: No problem ma’am. Those should be shipped to you within three working days.
Me: (With relief) Thank you so much, Richard. My husband and I really appreciate this. Oh, and by the way, may I place his name on the account?
Richard: Absolutely! I just need a little information.
Richard asks the typical questions….. first name, last name, date of birth, blah blah blah, but the last was my favorite.
Richard: Oh gosh, I’m sorry, I really do need the last four digits of his social security number before entering him on the account. If he calls to question a bill, someone will ask for it.
Me: (Faster than a random hiccup, and sounding as if I’d been studying and memorizing the numbers to my husband’s social security number for the last twenty three years of my life, the numbers flew out of my lips as smooth as a George W. Bush mispronunciation) 1234.
Richard: You’re all set. Anything else we can do for you?
At that moment, I thought I could talk him into free cable for the next six months, but I didn’t want to press my luck or spew additional lies on this sacred day of finally being pleased with Comcast. On that day, Richard was my ComChrist. Three days later, it was Christmas for my husband……..I mean my wife.
It was the second time in my life I had sinned by telling a lie. I didn’t steal anything, I didn’t kill anyone, and as far as I’m concerned, on that day, Richard was my neighbor, and I loved him.