When I worked for The Learning Company if I ever had a computer problem all I had to do was contact the IT department to come help me out. Within 5 minutes one particular IT guy would come to my little cubicle and make everything right. He had glasses, long sideburns and always wore large belt buckles. If I am not mistaken he had a love for country music and trucks. I may have been invited to a concert once or twice. Regardless, he made everything all better; like when I did not understand why our connection was down, or the printer did not hook up or um even when I could not figure out where the network was.
Small Business has No IT guy
Sometimes I sit and wonder where my IT guy is now, I daydream that he might some day come in and sweep my computer off my desk and make all my computer problems go away. I miss him, I miss my IT guy, I have no IT guy.....I am the IT guy.
Today was one of those days where I sat and wondered about my IT department. The reason was due to a snafu or a "reasons we can't explain" as the lovely lady at AT&T called it. My internet went down and I had to figure out why, yep me, myself and I on the phone with AT&T.
Tech Support On The Phone
First I argued back and forth with tech support regarding the fact that we had changed our plan and changed our DSL lines and I was pretty sure that AT&T had turned off the wrong line (it has happened numerous times and only AFTER we turned a line off or changed it). The guy told me his name was Angel....yes he said Angel and he could help me. He also said no, he was sure my router was broken, or my phone line, modem or....maybe rabid squirrels ate through the cables and reconfigured my computer while I was out - I sort of stopped listening after the seventh possibility. Well maybe he did not say squirrels, but he might have - I had no idea what he was talking about.
We went back and forth with what could of happened for about ten minutes. I finally interrupted him and asked him to help me fix it...just explain to me slowly what I had to do. I may have gotten a tad irritated but I did not start crying (been there, done that). He started by explaining to me what cord to un-plug from the modem, and back into the router, the phone, then the computer. The phone conversation went something like this;
Angel: "Take the blue cord from your router and put it into your computer. Now ma'am take the cord from your modem and put it in your router, now put the cord from your Modem into your computer. Did you do that ma'am?"
Me: "Yes I (grunt, whimper) sorry I had to pull my hard drive out and I am now laying (breathing hard)on the ground plugging and un-plugging cords...I did that."
Angel: "Are you okay ma'am....you sound like you are struggling ma'am."
Me: "I am fine Angel, just having to tear my entire system apart and plug and un-plug things."
Angel: "Phone line working or not ma'am? What about the internet ma'am?"
Me: " I am on the phone so that works. No Angel, the internet is not working."
Angel: "Try to plug this number in....now this one...now this one....does that work Ma'am?"
Me: "Nope, no not that one....no that does not work either."
Angel: "What does your router say ma'am?"
Me: (It doesn't say anything.....hahahahaha but it blinks) "Sorry I was day dreaming, um it is not lit up, it is blinking."
Angel: "Do you have internet now ma'am? How about now? Now ma'am?"
Jamie: "No, no....wait now it works. It works! It works in safe mode and when I bypass the router."
Angel: "Okay good that is a start. Is your modem old or new ma'am?"
Jamie "Um, here is the deal could you please stop calling me ma'am? I hate being called ma'am. It makes me feel old and I am not old enough to be called ma'am....call me Jamie, please."
Angel:"How old are you ma'am....er Ms. Lentzner.......I mean Jamie?"
Jamie"I am 40."
Angel "Wow - that's how old my Mom is. I am 22"
Jamie "Never mind, Thanks - ma'am is fine."
How do I talk to an Angel?
All kidding aside after 2 hours on the phone with Angel I was ready to get his home address and send him a Christmas card. He was very patient and not once told me that I may be a total ignoramus for not understanding my internet, or remembering ANY of my passwords. We discussed our past vacations, how he still got carded and his lack of a Texas accent (he was working at a call center in Texas). I was a tad bit smitten by him - he had helped me and all was good. All was going to be hunky-dory....until he told me this.
Angel: "Um Jamie (yes we got past the ma'am formality) I am not certified to take this call any further. I need to forward you to the Tech Support that handles router problems. Uh.....and they will be charging you for the call. I am real sorry, you can ask for a payment plan...."
Me: "Fine, whatever....thanks for your help, you have been very nice. Sorry for uh being rude in the beginning. Take care.....(call me?)"
Angel:"You too Mrs. Lentzner, ma'am....Jamie I mean. I will send you an email"
Three Hours Later
I got into a fight with another more senior IT department person, her name was Talon. Is it just me or have I entered like a strange universe with names? It was like a Percy Jackson book, or a Greek Mythology novel I may have read in college. I was sure that her supervisor Zeus was going to get on the line.
Anyway, I was trying to prove that my phone line was NOT disconnected since I was talking to her on it. I also go to argue that NO I could not go on the website to fix the problem because....I HAD NO INTERNET! My accountant (mother) came in to the office on her day off to help with the problem. She got to argue and fight with Tallon also. And, once again we were reminded no less than 7 times that this was our problem and we had to pay for this service. Ya....that would be the service that AT&T screwed up when they turned off one of our phone lines, then turned it back on - this screwed up our Internet address. We finally got a tech support person (I was hoping his name was Falcon, Medusa or Apollo....but I think it was Frank) to get our Internet working.
And That's The End
At the end of the day all was well at Jamie's Painting & Design. Our internet was up, email was working and the birds were chirping............uh not really, but we had internet so Hallelujah! We (me and my Mom) did get it all up and running, even without an IT department and me having not one idea which cord went where or what the hell I was doing. Guess my IT department consists of me, my mother, Talon, Angel and Frank. I hope Angel doesn't come into my office tomorrow and try to get me to go to a Billy Ray Cyrus concert....I may have to say yes.