Digital Dilemma

July 13, 2017

By Rick Smith

“If the problem is yours, not ours,” stated the courteous technical support specialist, “there will be a $75 charge.”

But I was sure the problem wasn’t our problem. I’d checked every connection thoroughly, I’d rebooted and followed all the recorded prompts before being transferred to my live person assistant.

So, why was I still doubting myself?

“You can sign-up for the insurance right now,” offered the friendly voice, “and if the problem does end up being yours, there will be no charge.”
As a fail-safe, it seemed sensible to activate the insurance – just in case. I wrestled with my decision for a moment, bothered by the angst that accompanies the realization of my digital-world deficiency.

“OK, put me down for the insurance,” I submitted. A field tech was scheduled to our home between 8 and 10 a.m. the following day.

At 9 a.m. Nate arrived and we journeyed together to the room that lacked a signal for the TV and the internet.

“Your modem is fine,” Nate surmised, “just not receiving a signal.”

He followed the cable wire to where it disappeared behind a small bookcase. I pulled the bookcase away from the wall where Nate found a power strip, several connected items and a cable splitter.

“The splitter should have a green light visible,” Nate said. “Maybe a problem with the splitter.”

Then we both noticed that the red light of the power strip was not “on” either. Nate flipped the switch but still no light.

“Oh, no,” I said. “It’s the power strip,” We’d found the problem, since the power strip was still plugged into the wall outlet.

But then I saw Nate’s head turn to the light switches on the wall by the door. Without even looking myself, I knew what he was going to say. ”Try turning that one light switch on,” he said.

Beyond my digital realm of understanding, I failed to consider that we were plugged into an outlet controlled by a light switch just inside the door. And, that the light switch had been turned off by accident.

I tried as best I could not to be the digital dummy. But I failed.

Then again, I did save $68. I’ll think on that, and tape down the light switch.

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Author: Rick Smith

Rick Smith is a resident of Cave Creek and a not-frequent-enough contributor to The Peak. Rick is a published author and former editor. His book, REMF, describes his behind-the-line experiences in Viet Nam. Rick story was awarded 1st place in The Peak’s 2004 Write Stuff Contest.

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1 Comment

  1. That paid for the digital education! Your experience sounds very, very familiar. Thank you.

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