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More Ike-related strangeness…

I arrived home from work yesterday to the strangest message on my phone answering machine. It was an automated message from the president and ceo of Cincinnati Bell (my land line carrier), recapping the service outages caused by Hurricane Ike’s one night stand in the tristate area.

There was the usual self-serving rigmarole about Cincinnati Bell’s response time in addressing and repairing line damage. Blah blah blah.

And then he finished with the most puzzling statement: “If you are still experiencing a phone service outage, please contact us at xyz-xyz-wxyz.”

Um. If I were still experiencing a phone service outage …

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Dear President & CEO of Cincinnati Bell: If you are unable to read this, please click the link below to contact customer service.

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Friday 26th of September 2008

The utility companies apparently have it out for me this month. First, I get that strange message. Then, I get my Duke Energy bill. The gas charges were $177. I have exactly one appliance that runs on gas, and that's my furnace, which has not been running since May. My bill says the readings were estimated because of Ike. Okay. But, instead of estimating based on *last* Sept's gas usage, they used my typical winter month CCF. Crikey! They did an estimate on gas usage last month, too, because the meter reader was apparently afraid of what might be living in the bushes and refused to wade in. (Come on, man, those are just wolf spider nests. Grow some.) It'll all work out in the end, but I should send them a bill for interest on all the extra money I've fronted them. (Oh, and thanks for noticing my ellipses. I work hard to end every commentary in a trailing off fashion ....)

Bill Brohaugh

Thursday 25th of September 2008

by the way, nice ellipses . . .

Bill Brohaugh

Thursday 25th of September 2008

One of my favorite TV moments is this:

Years ago, Andy Williams (your grandma's slick crooner and schmaltzinator of TV Christmas specials, most famous for “Moon River”) was hosting an Emmy Awards program (different times, obviously). Stevie Wonder was going to sing on the program via satellite remote (a tech marvel then). But technical difficulties stepped into the live broadcast, and Stevie wasn't responding to Andy’s cues. “Can you hear me?” Andy said. He tried that question a time or two by my recollection, and when he got no response, Andy asked Stevie, “If you can't hear me, can you see me?” I leave it to you to calculate the levels of inanity in asking a blind man who can't hear you that question.