Technical Difficulties

From the day I opened the box, I thought the color on my new computer looked weird. And not just a little. Every page I visit appears as though it has been bleached by the sun. I have tinkered with the color saturation and brightness. And that’s the most annoying part. Every single time I reboot the computer, I have to adjust the color again. I’m ready to scream. I am working on a book about the tortoises at my zoo, and being able to sort through my blue-million photographs and see which ones are good is kind of important. I am not above thinking that this issue my fault, but I decided to contact the company for tech support.

The moment I went to their site, I was invited to register my purchase. So I did. My dog is registered, so why not the computer? The first thing they requested however, requested the model number. Which happens to be on the bottom of the computer and contains more digits than the profit sheet of an oil company. The process would have been a wee bit simpler if I could have typed the digits in myself, but computers are not here to make our lives easier. Instead, I was presented with a drop down menu and asked to select my model number. From a list of 75 nearly identical numbers, all in tiny, cross-your-eyes pale blue font. It took several minutes of scrolling, turning the machine over to double check, scrolling some more, before I located what I was looking for. Wait. Does that have an extra digit? It does. Where is mine? Where is mine? Just as I was about to quit altogether, my model number appeared as if by magic. A few more clicks, and the process was complete. On to the help center.

The first request in the help center was, of course, my model number. Again. I scrolled, I studied the bottom of the computer, scrolled some more. Clicked it, moved on. I discovered that the page was a dead end for me, so I clicked to go back to the help center. And I was asked to select my model number. Scroll, turn, scroll, swear, scroll. Click. Another dead end, and back to the help center. To select my model number, which now is suddenly no longer visible. I may not know Squish’s social security number yet, but by golly, I can rattle my model number in my sleep. And I did.  For kicks, I had it tattooed on my bum-bum.

After about eight tries Finally, I found the right page and was able to send off an email requesting help. When I woke up this morning, I had this response:


If you need me, I will be drinking.


66 thoughts on “Technical Difficulties

  1. Bwahaha…that’s priceless. Next email will most certainly contain more poor English grammar and attempt to hide the fact that the help center is in Malaysia.

  2. That sort of thing is enough to cause me to fantasize about taking a 10 pound sledge hammer to all their servers, because at least then they would have a valid reason for being as useless as nipples on a large male bovine, for their paying customers. Can you still take your color blind computer back to your point of sale retailer and make them eat it?

    • Sadly, I have to get that number lasered off. I’ll wait to see if the third time really is the charm before I get the tattoo again. After my 12th husband, you’d think I would make sure things work out before getting the tattoo.

      Husband now wants to know who the other 11 guys were.

  3. OMG, this is happening more every day. Yesterday the payables clerk at the office told me that Amex had denied a small charge she was trying to make. So I called them. After punching in the account number, the recording said, “We see that one of your charges did not go through. Is this what you are calling about? Say ‘Yes’ or enter ‘1’ if this is what you are calling about.” So I said “Yes.” And the recording said, “Your balance is $xxxx.xx and your next payment is due May 4. Thank you for calling.” argggghhhh…..

  4. I too have had similar experiences and so these days when I finally get my answer and am completely satisfied, then I go ape shit on the last customer service person I talk to and make it so they understand that their company will never get my business again unless they get their act together. Makes me feel better at least.

  5. Like most people, I have a long history living in the black hole of Customer Service. Usually, when I send a concern via email, I get: “We have received your request. please do not respond to this email. Thank you.” When I call, I get a lot of choices, none of which are mine. Then the voice says “Thank you for calling” and disconnects.

  6. Based on the massive complexities of this whole situation, while I was reading this I couldn’t help imagining that I was watching someone manage a computer back in the 1980s. I almost expected this was part of the script from 9 to 5 and later I’d see that you were actually Jane Fonda and the computer took up an entire wall of your house.

    Oh, what would we do without our Scooter Computer and Mr. Chips. Perhaps we could go Office Space on them?

      • Pssst (whispering cause I don’t want to be labelled as a troublemaker for tech support) – you do realize the people in customer service are usually the ones who didn’t take enough courses to become computer programmers or who were so off the wall personality-wise they couldn’t get a job as a programmer?

  7. As someone who works in IT, I hate that so much fails, but if it didn’t I’d be out of a job.
    Can I ask what kind of computer it is? (Manufacturer and (sorry) model number?) Might be something I’ve come across….

    • I’m taking it back. I got a second unit in the hopes that the first one was a fluke, but this one has the same bug. There’s enough variation in the issue and yet enough similarity that it’s obvious it IS a bug. I’ll try my luck with a different brand.

  8. Sounds like a recent experience I had where I needed to make a change to an account and put the account number in. I typed the thing a dozen times but it kept saying to type in the “full” account number. I did…a dozen, no two dozen times…it kept asking for the full account number. I wanted to kill it. I finally dealt with it the old fashioned way…I called the company on the phone to make the change…

  9. Oh yeah….seeing this makes my color saturation red. I am currently (really right this very second as I type this) on hold with Dell. I am typing on my laptop because my 5 month old desk top tower won’t boot. I bought them at the same time! I registered both.

    • I almost replaced this one with a Dell. The one I bought my husband 6 years ago has been decent. But I ended up opting for a different brand because the customer service reviews were lousy!

  10. Hilarious! I’m thinking… since you got the number tattooed on your bum-bum, you could do a live camera chat with tech support and *show them* the number when asked (Hey, buddy, see for yourself!)

    And I’m pretty sure that’s not the first time somebody’s done this, too.

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