Hello, we’re back… and we’re taking calls

I guess I’ve put off writing for a long time. It’s easy when you have excuses:

  • I didn’t have a broadband connection.
  • The broadband networks don’t install new lines in my building.
  • The exchange boxes in my building are all rusted up.
  • Globelines hates me.

Ad nauseam.

Actually, the first three statements are true. I swear to fuckin God.

I only got my broadband connected this year, and it took me several weeks to figure out how my router works (I still only have a vague idea). Even when I got my self-install kit from PLDT I had to call tech support and wait yet another week or so before I got anything to work. Of course when the PLDT lineman comes he goes and points out that the phone wire we were using at home had so much line noise we literally have to get the wire to snake through the phone box from the floor below through my apartment’s halls. Even that was a risky proposition because half the switch box is all rusted out. Everything in this building where I live is jerry-rigged. I think that’s funny for a building that has at least three companies dependent on broadband in its directory.

According to the condominium association, the phone utilities won’t set up their switch boxes because there isn’t any demand. I know there isn’t any demand because it isn’t available. Classic chicken and egg. I wonder why there isn’t any demand considering I’m in the middle of Ortigas Center. Go to Google Earth, find Ortigas Center on the map, and throw darts on your screen. One of those darts is bound to hit my building. If you could find it, that is. My puny seven-story building is dwarfed by the colossal behemoth next door. I guess that’s how it works when you’re a small fish in a big pond. Not like this building’s going to grow any more anyway.

What can I say? My building has idiosyncrasies. We’re a mixed use building, which means that half the parking slots are empty at night because people go to work here as well. There are two law firms on the second floor and a preschool on the fifth. I live on the fourth floor, and so almost everyone here has a bagwa to keep evil spirits out. I’m not so sure it works, though. I can still get in my apartment.

Anyway, I’m sure Globelines doesn’t hate me, because Innove Communications is a juridical entity and juridical entities don’t have feelings (or so all the lawyers tell me). However, they do have long memories. Especially if your name has this big red flag next to it with the word BLACKLISTED.

Here’s how it went. Middle of last year I went off on a sabbatical to prepare for the Bar. So I move out of the house and into the boondocks. On my way out, I notice that the DSL has been cut. We’d been behind on the payments somewhat and I didn’t really mind. I was, after all, supposed to be studying and not surfing for porn. So I just make a mental note to remind them when to pick their modem up. Fast forward to after the bar and I receive this bill from Globe that says I now have to pay twice my rate for a fraction of the speed the same rate would be with other networks. I call customer service and they tell me I’ll get a rebate.

Soon.

So they call me in Thailand (costing me around 2000 clams in roaming charges – how inconsiderate!) and all the time when I get back, but the rebate is nowhere to be seen. Now I’m insisting on having this rebate processed because they can’t move the phone unless all the charges are clear. One day, I get called out of the blue and I get asked whether I want the printer or the usage rebate. Of course I’m taking the bloody printer. This means, of course, that I’ve been forgiven by the guys at Innove, and I can now get my beloved DSL.

As soon as the tech guy comes over, he shakes his head and goes home. They can’t install in my building, because they just don’t have the switchboxes. Keerist. You think it would’ve helped if I got told this when I applied for the new line. As the old saying goes: BUT NO.

So there. I’m off to Cebu tomorrow, because my protégés are going to have a fight on their hands in the University of San Carlos School of Law. I hope the event gets their interest up in public international law and in moot courts. Those guys are still stuck in the dark ages of Oregon-Oxford debating (which has no relation to Oregon or Oxford University). I hope that’s not true anymore. We’ll see. I’m told last year the setup was as if it was some debate contest until one of our guys pointed out that it was supposed to be a court.

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