Technology is great, until it doesn’t work the way it it should; I think we’d all agree on that. We had one of those issues last night, when we discovered our satellite was no longer working. No TV on a Monday night? That meant missing Dancing with the Stars, which in this house is just unacceptable.
I checked all the cables, and the satellite dish itself, and concluded that either the dish is fried, or that there was some universal issue with DirecTV. I just didn’t have it in me to call customer service last night, so I just checked out the DirecTV Facebook page to see if anyone else was reporting a similar issue. They weren’t (why would it be that easy??), but they were reporting awful instances of long hold times and rude representatives.
I was so not looking forward to making that call to DirecTV for help.
Of course, most people only post things like that when they are unhappy, so I realized that there were probably many more happy customers than unhappy. I still didn’t have the energy to deal with it. I decided to just stream Netflix from my phone and hope that the satellite would magically fix itself.
That didn’t happen.
So, this afternoon I reluctantly dialed the customer service number, bracing myself for many minutes of awful hold music. Surprisingly, though, I got through to a representative not long after I dialed in. That was all well and good, but certainly I wouldn’t luck out twice, so I anticipated being met with a grumpy, impatient rep on the other end of the call.
A lovely rep, Barbara in Mississippi, walked me through several troubleshooting tips, but we had no luck. Just as she was trying to determine how quickly she could get a tech out to service the equipment, Alex started pulling on my arm.
“Mommy!! Tell her it was working yesterday, and then it didn’t, and I couldn’t watch Dancing with the Stars!!”
Barbara heard Alex repeat this statement many times before commenting on my “little helper”, and she asked how old he is. I figured that she thought he was much younger, so I told her that he’s 11, but that he has Down syndrome, and that he was just furious that he had to miss his favorite show. She laughed, then paused and said “If it makes you feel any better, my sister has Down syndrome, so I completely understand that.”
She went on to schedule our service call, then thanked me for calling in today, saying that she “really needed this call”. Her sister had been on her mind lately, she said, and she was happy to learn about Alex. She then told me that we could stream DWTS on the computer so he wouldn’t have to miss tonight’s two hour episode, and then she wrapped up by saying “Kiss your angel for me!”
I always find it interesting how we make these random connections with others in the Down syndrome community, seemingly just by luck. Last night, as Alex helped me pay for something, we learned that the gentleman helping us has a brother with Down syndrome. He beamed as he spoke with Alex; I could tell that he is quite fond of his brother. We could have picked up dinner from a number of places, but we were drawn to that restaurant, where this gentleman chatted with Alex. I could have called DirecTV last night, but I might not have been able to connect with Barbara. I’m glad these things worked out the way they did.
Thank you, Barbara, for your excellent service (and I will make sure that DirecTV knows about this, too). Alex quite happily watched clips from DWTS on his iPad tonight, although he made it quite clear that he misses watching it on the real TV. I guess the die-hard fans are a little particular about how they watch their favorite shows, right?