March 9, 2007

A Partial List of People I Did Not Murder Yesterday

1) The voice actor who took a job working for Comcast who recorded the message for them that goes. “This is Comcast. There is an issue with your account. Please call us.” *click*

Though the temptation raged in my black heart, I did NOT voice print her and impersonate an FBI agent and gain access to the FBI’s database and match her and print out her home address and go there and kill her in her bed, EVEN THOUGH she is SUCH a terrible actor that she probably should be killed before she can perpetrate a DEADLY audiobook that will, through the sheer nasal power of her heinous vocal ennui, make scores of folks fall asleep in the car and run down you and your innocent babies.


2) The Executive at Comcast who decided that it would be SUPER COOL to cut out a lot of boring and expensive customer care so that I could put my mother on hold to hear a recorded message from the unkilled but probably undead voice actor saying, “This is Comcast. There is an issue with your account. Please call us.” I then sat on hold for minute after long minute after endless eternal sulpherous demonic minute listening to MUZAK versions of Carpenter’s tunes (NO! YOU TROLLOP! I DO NOT KNOW THE WAY TO @&!&^#&@* SAN JOSE) waiting to see what Comcast’s issue might be.

3) The FLAMING BUTTHOLE who, 44 days and change ago, slipped a filthy paw down deep into the recesses of my purse while I was at Kroger and pulled forth a SINGLE AMEX card, leaving my bank card and ID and cash and keys, so that I did not NOTICE and then went and spent exactly 50 dollars at 8 gas staions, exactly 200 dollars even at several different Kroger's and 638 bucks at Stereo World.

4) The STUPID person who did not correctly make a list of all AUTOMATIC THINGS that that card was set up to pay for, so that my family’s goods and services have been constantly interrupted and stopped and shut off as those things have not been auto-payed for. Best Beloveds, it was my SKY MILES card. I use that card for EVERYTHING. Last year I flew to New York a couple times and took my whole family to Disney on the strength of the mighty miles I accumulate by running EVERYTHING through that card. Each month, that card pays for ALL my Utilities, all my groceries and gas, my First Edition Club with Alabama Booksmith, my NETFLIX, my cell phone, my mail forwarding service, my internet service provider, and, of course, my Comcast cable. It set up to automatically pay anything can be automatically paid that way…And SOME MORON only called and corrected the number about half those places.

Oops. I think that person may have been me. Still, I want the point for not killing me for that.

5) The first woman at Comcast’s Comcastic Customer Service Rodeo of Pain, who said, “Your account is 44 days overdue and we are shutting your service off in a minute.” Then I explained what happened and she said, “Uh Huh. Well whatever, but I can’t fix that and I cam not sure what you are talking about anyway. Just pay your bill.”
Me: I am trying to pay my bill. Can you help me change the credit card number.
Her: No.
Me: No?
Her: I don’t know how to do that. I don’t even know what you are talking about.

“I don’t even know what you are talking about” is an exact, direct, quote.

NOTE: My husband was never in any danger of being killed, because he is so cute and I like him…BUT. I thought of MAIMING him a TEENY bit when I told him about the first Comcast Vixen only to have him tell me to call Comcast BACK to fix it because "surely I would get a better rep this time."

6) The SECOND woman at Comcast’s Comcastic Customer Service Rodeo of Pain, with whom I had the following conversation.

Me: Hi. I’m having a billing problem. I’ve already spoken to one woman about it at this number, and she didn’t know what I was talking about, so I’m not sure I’m in the right department, but my sky miles credit card pays my bill automatically, and the number has changed. Can you change that for me?

Her: Don’t say sky miles credit card. That’s the problem.

Me: What?

Her: You should say Visa. Because I bet she didn’t know what a sky miles credit card is. Now, *I* know what it is, but put like that, it was probably very confusing to her. If you would just say Visa, it probably wouldn’t have been a problem.

Me: Okay – Can I just give you the new number then? It’s an American Express card, expires in June of---
Her: Well, when I said VISA I meant it to represent that if it was a VISA then you would say Visa. Obviously if it an American Express then that’s what you would say. But your problem with any rep is going to be that you used an incorrect term. My point is that to say Sky Miles credit card is very confusing and any issues you had with customer service I am sure arose from your odd use of that term.

Me: Well if I could just---

Her: And anyway, we don’t fix that. You have to do that yourself using *click*

I thought VERY hard about killing her, but then I realized that now, as never before, I had learned EXACTLY how to refer to my credit card in an UNCONFUSING MANNER! And they don’t let you USE Credit cards in prison. So I REFRAINED.

All in all, that’s a total of six completely NOT murdered people, and you should buy me an ice cream. Oh. Except I gave up all forms of sugar for Lent. Which might explain why half an hour of time lost to COMCAST'S phone system threw me into a homicidal rage. Is Homicidal rage the same thing as Spiritual growth? Because if so, I am having a ROCKIN’ LENT so far!

As an aside, let me say, I did not murder MANY MANY other people yesterday, including the American Express customer service rep who CAUGHT the fraudulent actuivity, froze the card and called me and made sure all charges were removed, and I also did not kill YOU, but that is because neither YOU nor the Amex lady needed any killing.


Posted by joshilyn at March 9, 2007 2:27 PM

I just read the first few sentences of #1 and almost choked to death on a sip of water. I should know better than to eat or drink while reading your blog. It's a good thing I can't read your blog while driving.

Posted by: Elizabeth at March 9, 2007 2:39 PM

WOW, but that is a tremendous amount of virtuous non-killing for one fabulous author on a VERY TRYING day. I congratulate you. Furthermore, I offer you some VERY DELICIOUS Coldstone Creamery ice cream that is made, not with sugar, but with SPLENDA. Surely you can have that?

Posted by: Aimee at March 9, 2007 3:35 PM

Could you hum a few bars of Do You Know the Way to !@#$%^&*()_+ San Jose? I distinctly remember a song with a similar title from my teen years but I don't remember that strange word in the middle of the title. When you do get ready to kill somebody, can I send you a "to do" list for me? No sense in both of us going to prison.

Posted by: Rhonda at March 9, 2007 3:43 PM

Dude, will you get some other service provider already? Like Direct TV or some highspeed DSL guy? We would really miss you if you were hauled off to the place with the weird toliets and graffiti you already swore off from. You are TOO GOOD FOR THE SATAN COMCAST!
Just sayin'

Posted by: Chris at March 9, 2007 4:37 PM

I am laughing SOOOOO hard!!!!!! Tears are coming out of my eyes!

Posted by: Martha O'Connor at March 9, 2007 4:58 PM

Hilarious! If your books are as good as your blog, you're gonna be super-extra rich and famous. Then you can buy Comcast and put an end to the Comcastic Customer Service Rodeo of Pain once and for all. No killing required.

Posted by: Jennifer at March 9, 2007 5:04 PM

I would be all for changing service providers, if there was an option that offered a download speed that rivals cable.

Comcast is the only cable provider, and DSL, even they very expensive plan, just can't compete with the speed of Comcast when it works. It's like buying really nice bourbon from Satan. Sure, there's the immortal soul thing, but no body elses bourbon tastes quite as good.

Hmmmm... thinking of it in those terms, maybe it's time I took another look at DSL.

Posted by: Mr. Husband at March 9, 2007 5:34 PM

Oh, my goodness, how could you deal with all of that WITH NO SUGAR??? I'm so, so sorry. I feel your pain, I really do, because I seem to emit some sort of force field that automatically makes customer service people snarky and stupid with me. Maybe, just maybe, it's not me. Reading your blog has given me hope.

Yay for the nice AmEx lady. I've always found them to be quite helpful.

And, you know, I realize this is not a helpful thing to say, but this is the sort of reason we still write checks. The whole automatic deduction thing just worries me somehow. Not that I have much faith in the postal system, either...

Posted by: amy at March 9, 2007 7:06 PM

I am tired of stupid people. . .of which you are not one. . .but of which are all of the people you just wrote about except your cute husband, and the AMEX lady, and us, and MY cute husband and my adorable children who are BOTH reading BOOKS on the first Friday night of spring break (Drat that Fat Cat and Geronimo Stilton: The Search for Sunken Treasure) which makes them not stupid either--especially since on of them cannot yet really, truly read but just likes to peruse literature for the fun of it.

Bravo for not becoming a murderer of any sort.

I still am VERY, VERY tired of stupid people.

Posted by: Roxanne at March 9, 2007 8:25 PM

Oh. . .and because I just now thought of it. . .Drat that Fat Cat is about a cat who eats everyone in his path including a little old lady. I bet if you got Schubert all hopped up and hungry by hiding the kitty kibble from both he and adorable Maisy, that he MIGHT be hungry enough to eat all of your stupid people and some of mine.

No offense meant to Schubert, but you HAVE mentioned him and fat in the same sentence a time or two.

Posted by: Roxanne at March 9, 2007 8:27 PM

Damn all those people! You're a very, very good girl for not killing them.

I spent several months plotting revenge on AT&T, who wouldn't believe that we didn't run up a $10,000 phone bill for a 28-hour call to the Phillipines after E-spouse's AT&T calling card was lifted in the Atlanta airport. Then, after we thought it was all straightened out, our mortgage company said, "Sorry, you can't buy that cool old house in that amazing neighborhood because you owe AT&T over $10,000." It worked out, eventually, and we bought the house. But I still hate AT&T. And Comcast too!

Posted by: Edgy Mama at March 9, 2007 9:20 PM

Wow, no wonder you were so vigorous in the discussion about southern funerals, you were having some virtual smile moments, er, I note that because of the comcastic druel and the heinous gleem in your eyes.

Posted by: Cele at March 10, 2007 8:41 AM


I am of the opinion that ALL cable companies are instruments of Satan. In fact, I believe that statement of all television service providers because of some nasty incompetence we've encountered with sattelite providers as well.

Poor Joss. Surely you can eat some, say, 85% cacao dark chocolate or something, since there's really hardly any sugar at all in there. And God would certainly understand - even S/HE couldn't not eat a teeny tiny bit of sugar at a time like this.

Posted by: JenA at March 10, 2007 10:37 AM

"Is Homicidal rage the same thing as Spiritual growth? Because if so, I am having a ROCKIN’ LENT so far!" <-- That has me HOWLING! I am feeling your pain because I gave up all forms of MEAT for Lent and let me just say that I am very much an omnivore and that my young children are starting to look disturbingly tender and juicy. (drool)

Posted by: catherino at March 10, 2007 1:03 PM

I feel your pain sister. I didn't give up all sugar for Lent, but I did give up sweets in general -- no chocolate, no cookies, etc. I thought about giving up coffee but then decided that would be in NO ONE's best interest.

I had a similar experience with a credit card company yesterday. Have you tried to actually speak to a HUMAN BEING at a credit card company lately? Even though their 800 number says "Customer Service Representatives are available 24 hours a day" what they really mean is Computers are available 24 hours a day! I will grudgingly say, however, that when I finally reached a real live human that she was helpful. Sort of.

Posted by: Leandra at March 10, 2007 1:21 PM

I applaud you for your restraint. I probably would have reached through the phone and strangled that woman with her ID Badge Lanyard.

Posted by: Heather Cook at March 10, 2007 4:04 PM

"Comcastic" should be banned from the English language and never, no never spoken out loud. Especially to a woman in the throes of sugar deprivation.

I am glad I'm Lutheran, we do not give up anything for Lent except Wednesday nights. And that involves soup.

Posted by: JenniferG at March 10, 2007 7:47 PM

I know this is late for the website thing, but when I read your books I found a feeling of steel magnolias. Although a steel magnolia may be a person or attitude, or what-have-you, the flower its self symbolizes that and so much more. Strong and southern-- Just an idea- Magnolias.

Posted by: catherine at March 11, 2007 12:22 AM

In my house we refer to them as the Cable Bastards, but not in front of the children. They don't need to hear that kind of language, and anyway, they'll learn about cable bastardy soon enough.

Are you still coming to the Atlanta Writers Club meeting later this spring? That is, if you're not locked up for killing someone.

Posted by: Jim Harrison at March 11, 2007 4:30 PM

I don't have Comcast and I am glad I don't.

I went shopping Saturday with my college daughter at Barnes and Noble. I was telling her about your book and how much I loved your book. I was all like "I wish the book was here. I'd buy it for you."

She was all "Oh. great. A book selected by my 40ish mother. Sure. Won't be able to put THAT ONE down."

Then I found "gods in Alabama" sitting on a shelf staring at me like "Duh. I'm right here. Buy me."

So I handed the book to the kid and said "If you can get through the first page and NOT want to read this book, I won't get it for you."

I was in the check out line 5 minutes later ... she'd only gotten through the first two paragraphs.

40ishers - 1 pts.
20ishers - 0 pts.

Can't wait to read your new one.

Posted by: timmi at March 12, 2007 2:03 PM

This is the best blog entry I've read in ages. Time for stand-up!

Posted by: parrotzmom at March 12, 2007 4:53 PM

ohhh, gosh. All I can do is shead a tear for you and feel truly SICK to my stomach. Getting a credit card stolen is my worst night mare. It happened to a friend a few years back and her life has never been the same. You DESERVE to get to kill somebody!

Posted by: Desi at March 12, 2007 5:05 PM

ever notice that many of us in comments start to sound like Joshilyn? With the witticisms and caps and all that. See that, you are a trendsetter, Josh. We all want to be like you.

Posted by: parrotzmom at March 12, 2007 8:38 PM

Good site. Thanks.

Posted by: portable nebulizer at March 17, 2007 12:32 PM