Where AT&T makes me give up Ohio

As an Apple-head, I’ve wanted the iPhone since Steve “I am almost as smokin’ hot as Alton Brown” Jobs announced it way back when. Then the updated version was publicized a few weeks back and I began to salivate at the mouth. I’ve had my current phone for two years and it’s ready for retirement. Not only does it have the usual dings and dents from years of purse rolling, it’s been dropped in the toilet twice. Both times it’s miraculously survived to see another day. That phone has been a fighter. Still, it’s ready to retire and this time, a blow dryer and excessive pleading with the Phone Gods aren’t going to help. The latest phone-related issue surfaced after the recent second dunk in the toilet (note to self: purse on sink and Bionic Kitty are not compatible). I’ve noticed the “3” button stopped registering a few days ago and the “2” button is also temperamental. Since the local area codes are 703 and 202, and DC requires ten digit dialing, I’ve found this to be a bit of a problem.

Also, my iPod has issues thanks to the afore-mentioned toilet submersion. Usually, iPod problems just indicate I’ve done something stupid. For example, during my first trip to the Genius bar, I learned about manual override. Who knew? Well, besides those people who read the directions? The second trip, the Genius People fixed my iPod’s error messages by making me upgrade my iTunes account so the two things could communicate again. Apparently, there is a big difference between 4.0 and 7.2. The third trip a few days ago was the death keel. My screen had stopped working thanks to excessive water exposure and that’s an issue which can’t be fixed. Instead, I either need a new iPod or the willingness to accept my iPod’s new limitations. At this point, it’s basically a really big Shuffle. In theory that is OK. But every time I am close to accepting that I’ve been downgraded to a Shuffle, I’m rockin’ out to Thievery Corporation and then comes an NPR podcast. It’s a jab to the heart.

Basically I am the proud owner of two bum pieces of electronics that half function. If I’m replacing, why not upgrade to one, user-friendly, much-coveted, shiny thing? Justification is totally in place but I’m not one to run out and randomly change phone carriers. Plus the new iPhone has a few days before launch. So, I thought I should ask AT&T a few questions. After all, Verizon has taught me two years is a lifetime in the wireless world. What was once a great phone plan at a great price is now robbing me blind. I feel ill each month when I write out the check. Yes, I still pay bills that way. Leave me alone.  Anyhoo, all I wanted to know was if I could keep my current phone number. Not a big question. But the type of thing I like to ask a live person. Talking to a real human being when I need customer service support makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside.

So first, I tried to call a few stores. No answer. At any of them. Um, OK. Then I noticed this nifty feature online where you could get help from an AT&T customer service professional via a chat session. Behold, the miracles of the interwebs at work! I quickly signed on, got assigned to Kristin the Customer Service Rep, and reveled in how AT&T was a forward thinking, techno savvy company (doesn’t take much to impress me) who was in tuned with my generation’s love of online chatting. Only problem is that Kristin never responded to anything. Not a character, not a word, nothing. What gives, AT&T? Is Kristin really in New Delhi and not actually a Kristin? Does she really go by Kajal? Because I’ve had enough of that kind of customer service from Hell, I mean Dell, thank you very much. In desperation, I called the 888 number. And got disconnected. Twice! And then, only then, did I find a nifty little feature online that allows a person to check their phone number and see if can carry across wireless providers.

Hallelujah!

I quickly typed in my beloved Ohio number. It’s the number I’ve had for almost seven years, the number that everybody knows, including Papa Johns locations in three states, the only number that’s ever been totally mine. And it said no. I can’t take my number when I get an iPhone. I swear, my soul died a little in that moment.

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4 Responses to “Where AT&T makes me give up Ohio”

  1. gChat Buddy Says:

    I shed an interweb tear for you.

    What are you going to do? The Ohio number IS you. And I think I’ve called you on it from at least half of the continental states.

    And, it’s also the only cell phone number I actually have memorized. Yes, you even beat my parents….I don’t know their new home phone number either.

    iPhone v. Identity? What gives?

  2. Me Says:

    1) i thought with portability you were suppsoed to be able to take the number everywhere. AT&T/ Cingular pulled that crap on us too.

    2) Where else would you salavate from but the mouth?

    3) I’m no expert in spelliology but the “Knell” in “Death Knell” has an “N”

    4) yes, i am that bored at work today. its 8:01 and i’m doing this. The funny thing is i was uber busy and i had to find someone to cover some work for me on one project in order for me to be able to work on another project that i was told had the utmost priority. The the super important project work got cancelled, so i’m left holding the bag with neither projects to work on. Who doesn’t love government funded research.

  3. Katherine Says:

    Phil:

    1) Yeah, portability is a lie. I checked with Sprint, too and no portability. Curses.

    2) Dunno. Always just heard the expression include the mouth.

    3) So you know I don’t reread, spell check, etc. Right? And I can’t spell for anything.

    4) You really must be bored.

    Hugs!

  4. Me Says:

    well, i’m not AS bored today as i was last Thursday but i did take the time to see if you replied or updated your blog so what does that say about MY life??

    P.S. Kelly is a Guitar Hero freak now.

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