I hope you have a strong constitution. That you are not
faint of heart. If you can’t ride a roller coaster due to cardiac issues, then
maybe you shouldn’t read any further. Are you sitting down? Do you have a
blanket to throw over your head if the fright is too much? Somebody to grab
hold of? Brace yourself now…
YESTERDAY VAL HAD NO INTERNET!!!
The horror is almost too much for me to take. Val lives by
internet alone, people! INTERNET! With a dash of Diet Coke! You might as well
shoot that novocaine numbing drug into my extremities and expect me to escape from
one of those wonky off-kilter houses, staffed with an army of
paintball-shooting zombies. I cannot function without internet!
It worked just fine the day before. Worked, in fact, until I
called it an early night at 11:45 p.m., in order to get to bed earlier in order
to get up earlier to walk before my brains under my dark lady-mullet (courtesy of L'Oreal), covered
with a blue-and-white trucker cap...fried like an egg on a sidewalk. Yes, my internet worked just fine.
When I shut down, the screen said two updates were loading, so not to touch the
computer. I didn’t. Val does not mess with the internet.
Wednesday morning, I was out the door and walking by 7:00
a.m., and back inside ready to connect Shiba to the internet by 7:45.
I HAD NO CONNECTION!
I’m a logical person. Hmm. What was different about my
Scenario Number 1:
There was that update thingy when I shut down New Delly. But updates happen
every now and then. They don’t block my internet.
Scenario Number 2:
The husband of Hick’s new best friend Bev had come over Sunday evening and
invited himself to use my internet to load something on his computer that
needed a product key. He quizzed me about whether we had it password protected.
Um, NO. I don’t understand that witch-doctory information superhighway. I asked
BevMan if his “borrowing” would mess up my internet, and he scoffed at me. NO!
The old drawing board in my head highlighted Scenario Number 3: After I went to bed
at 1:00 a.m. Tuesday night, I was awakened around 4:00 by my Sweet, Sweet Juno barking her
fool head off hysterically, right outside the French doors of our bedroom.
That’s the corner of the house where the DISH that receives our internet signal
is bolted. When I realized that, I KNEW what had stopped my internet!
CRAZY DUDE HAD COME UP ON THE PORCH AND SABOTAGED OUR DISH!
Okay. Allegedly. Mayhap he did, and mayhap
he didn’t. But what else could have gone wrong between 11:45 p.m. and 7:45
a.m.? Do DISHes just fall off the porch rail? Do they get tired of receiving a
signal? I don’t know. You tell me.
Anyhoo…I did the diagnostic thingy with Shiba. Then I went
to try out New Delly. Both of my devices were deader than doornails when I
tried to pull onto the information superhighway. So I sent Genius a text. He’s
working a regular job in Kansas this summer with Garmin, you know. So I had to start with, “I know
you’re working a real job, but…” That pacified him, I guess, because he
responded right away with suggestions and instructions. Some of which involved
me taking pictures of routers and wires and bricks and electrical outlets.
You understand, right, that my cell phone won’t work in my
dark basement lair? It will send and receive texts, and that is all. So to send
pictures, I had to hike up 13 steps and go out on the porch. It was during one
such trip that I smelled hot electric. You know that smell. Like something
electronic just got fried. Or like your husband is burning wire that he pulled
out of a building so he can sell the copper once the coating is gone.
I went around on the side porch to look at the DISHes. The
TV one is bigger, and has been here longer, and is near the front of the house.
But on down the rail, on the corner near Poolio, is the internet DISH. It
LOOKED all right. But the smell was strong there, and a haze of smoke hung in
the humidity between it and the woods. What a curious development. Even though
the internet didn’t work at least an hour before I noticed this odor and smoke.
It wasn’t there when I was walking. But now I could even see the haze faintly
across the front yard, too.
Genius said that it was probably not at all related to my
internet problem. And that if it WAS, I had a much more serious problem than
lack of an internet connection.
Anyhoo…Genius talked me through unpluggings and re-pluggings
and troubleshooters and IP4 addresses and all kinds of stuff I never even knew
existed. Then he gave me some kind of number to type into a new window to check
on the DISH connection, and determined that the problem was nothing to do with
our own network or router inside the house, but a problem with DISH. He spent his whole lunch
half-hour doing this for me when he called me at noon.
Genius said to call DISH. That they’d tell me to unplug
everything he just had me do earlier, and if so, tell them okay, and put the
phone down five minutes, then pick it up and tell them it was done. I can
understand why he thought they might not believe me. I did, after all, ask him
to remote-access my computer and try to fix it that way. But then he said, “If
you don’t have internet, I can’t remote access it.” Go figure! I also flip the
lights on when the power is out.
The DISH lady was very polite, and spent another 30 minutes
walking me through stuff in Hick’s basement workshop related to the DISH
router, which nobody told me was on a
shelf above my head, out of sight. Except for that kind DISH lady, of
course, who sighed a lot and described assorted wires and asked me to follow
them and tell her what was on the end, insisting it would say DISH, but
everything I had said HUGHES. Then she asked if I saw four blue lights on that
router thingy, and I said no, and she said not even on the front, and I said
no, there is nothing on the front but a black section that looks like maybe a
piece of electrical tape, but no lights or anything that looks like it could
light up, but inside I see blue lights.
After more unplugging and re-plugging, the kind DISH lady
told me she still showed that the DISH was the problem, and I needed a
repairman for $95. After trying to sell me a monthly protection plan of $10.99
which I declined, she tried to upsell me on faster and more internet, but once
I found out it would take a new dish, I said NO SIREE, BOB to that lady named
Tonya, because I was SO not having it, another troublesome installation like the
first one, where the guy bent our gutter and somehow changed my billing from
paper to paperless, resulting in a past-due bill.
Anyhoo…I sent Genius a text to tell him what was going on,
per his request, a part of the exchange including this statement:
“The lady was polite, but I could tell she thought I was an
idiot. She said it should have blue lights, but some genius has black tape
covering that area, so I looked through the vents and saw them. I think an ape
installed it. Remember, he broke our gutter?”
“Did you just take off the tape? I’d had to tape them over
to keep them from ruining my photos in the darkroom.”
Looks like some GENIUS really DID put black tape on the
Gee Whiz, Even Steven! I kind of
expected more, what with turning in a found lottery ticket, a $9.80 book of
stamps, and 11 cents…AND giving a dollar to an alcoholic.
Anyhoo…if you’re reading this, it means that a DISH
technician actually DID show up and get the job done, and you’ll probably hear
about it in the coming days.