I've been without the Internetz for three days now. Our modem died, as I finally discovered after wasting a half-day on the phone with the worst telecommunications provider I have ever had the displeasure of dealing with, aka, Telstra. I've been through this before...getting mis-transferred from person to person, explaining the situation over and over, trying and retrying diagnostic steps and ending up in tears of frustration.
This time I skipped the tears and went straight to my I-will-hunt-you-down-and-poison-your-pets voice. It worked. The final CSA I spoke with offered to send me a free wireless modem. Fuck yes, "it's the least they can do for the trouble I was put through." Honestly. Meanwhile, I wait for it to arrive. Expedited, my ass.
Right now, I am sitting at a Sydney public library, where they have wireless internet. Because of filters and firewalls either here or in the U.S., I cannot log on to the VPN at work. But at least I can do some offline research for them. It's something to put on the timesheet at least, but it's less than ideal.
This also means I can catch up on e-mails and blogging. So here's the post I intended to write the day the wireless died, just before I drank some whisky and rye.
Overheard behind me on a city bus:
"Yeah, deeewd, you should check it eeewt! It's awesome. Seriously, you should. You'll love it."
"No really. I love him. His music rocks. His name is Calvin Harris. You know, Calvin, as in, um you know...C-A-L-V-I-N H-A-R-R-I-S."
"He's from Scotland. You know where that is? Scotland?"
"You can hear him at the Good Vibrations Festival here in Sydney. You ever been to that, the Good Vibrations Festival? You know, G-O-O-D V-I-B..."
"Yeah, I know what you're talking about. No. I've never been."
"Oh, okay. Well, you should check it eeewt. It's awesome. Seriously, you should check it eeewt. Here, have a listen."
"Yeah, dude. Check it eeewt."
"Okay. Are you from Scotland?"
"No way, man. I'm Canadian."
"I moved here to go to law school, up near Surfer's Paradise. You ever been there?"
"Oh yes. It's nice up there."
"Deeeewd, yeah. It rocks. It's like...you ever been to America?"
"No, not yet."
"Well, they say it's a lot like Florida. You know, Florida, USA...F-L-O-R-I-D-A."
"Oh yes. I've heard of it."
"Yeah, deeewd. Well, you know, like, I'm Canadian. I don't really like America, but I hear it's a lot like that Florida place."
"Yeah. Don't get me wrong, America is beautiful. But [voice lowering a couple of decibels, down from screaming to shouting range] you know how the French are arrogant? Well, Americans are fucking arrogant, you know?"
"Yeah. I don't really like them."
"Yeah, I'm reading this book. It's the best book I've ever read. It's all about Guns, Germs and..."
"This is my stop."
"Oh, okay, deewd. Well, you should check eeewt the book. It's awesome."
"Take it easy, man."
Later, as I get up to leave, I turn around to have a look at this numbskull. At first I want to say something about how ugly he is, but I show some compassion.
Instead, I say to him, "Gee fella. I don't know where you plan to practice, spelled with a "c", law...once you're done, but during the process, pronounced "prah-sess", I hope you have a look in the mirror when you start labeling people as arrogant."