Tuesday. Telephone repairman doesn't turn up. I'm not going on hold again so I swear at the cat instead. The wife has gone to Melbourne. Good timing.
Sparky No. 2 turns up on Wednesday. They’re here on the right day. Didn't call to check if anyone was home, but they’re quick and neat and don't break anything.
One of the A/C's comes out of the box with the side kicked in, but they actually have a spare one and replace it straight away. That's a good thing; I prefer to put my own dents in my stuff.
For some reason I look in the front yard and blow me down there’s some dude yanking wires out of a hole in the front lawn. My thongs almost catch fire as I run out. Yes, it's a Telstra contractor. He seems to think the problem is in the pit. He won’t go near the box dangling under the house even after I pint to it and admit some retards have dislodged it recently. He looks up at me real slow. I can already see there's no way he's even contemplating crawling under the house.
He fiddles around for a bit. It’s fixed, he reckons, and drives away saying he'll ring me from down the street to check the line. I feel a strong urge to make him leave his wallet with me so he has to come back. He rings up and the phone line’s still crap. Amazingly he actually comes back but still won’t look at the box. Not even a little side long look. He comes inside the house instead and pulls apart the phone line.
'Yep, I've fixed it this time.'
Bugger me the main phone does work, but now the extension has shit itself. That's the one that runs the Internet connection. The Internet connection that was still working before he started fucking with the line. The same line that I really need for research my articles and make submissions. I ask him if he’s going to have a look and he says:
“Gonna cost you $33 every 15 mins (plus this and that) but I've only got 2 days left on this job and I really can’t be fucked.”
If only I had my steel caps on, I'd kick him fair in the nuts.
I carefully explain my need to have the connection working and I don't care how much it costs. He can’t be persuaded. He tries to get me to ask the blokes putting the A/C’s in to do it.
“Fuck it, I’ll do it,” I say.
He has a think and decides it’s better than him doing it so, ok, whatever.
“Look, it’s pretty easy, I'll give you some wire and you can run a new extension and hook it up yourself.”
So he goes back to his van and cuts off a handful of wire. I stand forlornly by the kerb, holding about 100 metres of telephone cable in my hand, watching him drive away to not help the next customer.