Friday, January 6, 2012

Third Time's the Charm?

     “I hope I don’t see you soon,” I said, heading out the door.  “Happy new year!” 
     It doesn’t seem like a very nice thing to say, but under the circumstances it was the truth.  Around Dec. 17th I began experiencing problems with my cell phone.  When I slid out the keyboard, the screen would go blank.  I couldn’t see what I was typing when the keyboard was out, but the rest of the phone worked normally, so I dealt with it. 
     In the next couple days, my screen decided to stay white and blank all the time.  And because it wasn’t supposed to be blank, there was no short little message indicating “This Screen Left Intentionally Blank.”  I always find that message amusing as it makes the screen, card, or paper no longer blank when it’s on there.  I could still make calls and text, but I couldn’t see anything on the screen, so I was limited to those people whose numbers I know or whose place on my list of contacts I could remember. 

A Delayed Reaction
     My husband and I went to the Verizon store before Christmas, and they suggested I just upgrade my phone since we were eligible and it wasn’t likely my phone could easily be fixed.  I got the newer version of the phone I had.  The salesman added my contacts to the new phone, and I got a new car charger.  The one I had before would have worked if it hadn’t somehow gotten bent.  Yes, there is a pattern here: cell phones, accessories, and I don’t always work well together. 
     I thought the surreal screensaver on the new phone was kind of cool, and it was nice to have a screen that worked.  A few days of using the phone, though, and I got a little frustrated.  When I pushed a button, it would take literally 5-7 seconds before the phone would respond.  Holy delayed reaction, Batman!  It was a minor inconvenience most of the time, but a real project when I tried to text someone quickly. 

It Could Be Worse
     Now mind you, this has been in no way as bad as the cell phones and mobile service through T-Mobile that my mom and sister have.  Their issues have been significantly worse.  My mom texts Theresa, and it will sometimes take 8 hours for the text to show up on my sister’s phone.  As you can imagine, it is more than just a tad inconvenient that it would literally take about as much time to drive all the way up to Ohio, roughly an eight hour trip from here, and talk with my sister in person rather than text her. 
     One of the most extreme signs of needing to get a new cell phone and new service
occurred while my sister was home for Christmas break.  Her friends had texted and hadn’t heard from her.  It was the middle of the night, and she wasn’t at their place where she’d planned to be, and no one could reach her, so they called my mom who got in her car and was driving around the city looking for Theresa.  She was fine, thank God, but she hadn’t gotten anyone’s messages or calls, so she didn’t know they were worried. 
     Knowing full well that my cell phone woes weren’t nearly as severe as those my mom and sister have had, I still thought it would be nice to text a quick response to someone, so I went back to the Verizon store last week.  The salesman was kind and, as usual, baffled as to why my phone had such a delayed reaction to anything I typed in.  He replaced it with a new model of the same phone, transferred my contacts, and I was on my way.

“You can’t hear me now?!”
     This week, my screen works, I can text without a problem, but no one can hear me very well when I talk on this phone.  Everyone says I sound fuzzy.  I thought maybe it was just a fluke, an isolated incident, but no.  Each person I’ve spoken with has said they can barely hear me, so I went back to the Verizon store again today, and explained the ongoing saga of my cell phone trauma to yet another sales clerk. 
     He suggested I get a different model of phone, which I agreed to doing.  He transferred my contacts, logged the latest issues into their database, and gave me a new phone which so far has a cool screensaver, a screen that works, a reasonable response time for typed in commands, and people can actually hear me when I talk on it. 
     I sincerely hope I will not be seeing any of the kind salespeople at the Verizon store anytime soon.  Don’t get me wrong, they’re nice people and have provided good customer service, but enough is enough.  My hope is that the third time’s the charm…like with our Christmas tree fiasco this year.  (I’m pretty sure family Christmas tree reject #2 is still out in my mom’s front yard if you’re interested.) 
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