From the Pen of the Barber Surgeon - Mr Roger Morgan
So Friday lunchtime was spent in an online cyber chat with a BT person; he writing to me, me writing to he, and despite me saying that the line was not working he was adamant that it was because the computer told him so. What a fruitless exercise that was, dear lord above. But on Friday evening I girded up the Morgan loins and phoned BT. Unbelievably after a 30 minute queue I spoke to a very nice chap in Mumbai who spoke excellent English and, surprise surprise, diverted from the script ! He checked the line (yes, all the way from India) but instead of just sticking with 'computer says fine' he said that obviously something else was at fault and he'd get an engineer around, no charge, the next morning. Top man. Sure enough, 10am there was a knock on the door and there stood a be-overalled chap with a small tool bag and a Star Trek style tablet greeting me with a cheerful "Hey baby I'm your telephone man, just tell me where you want it and I'll stick it where I can, you can have it with a buzz you can have it with a ring , and if you really want it you can have a ding-a-ling cause'........." no, he didn't say that at all, that was a crap song from the '70s. What he said was "Morning sir, I understand you have a problem" and off he went like a terrier on a scent. Initially Vetaia, for that was his name, took a long look at the inside junction box and recoiled in disbelief !
" Er, when was this put in? I haven't seen one like this for years".
"1963, if memory serves". I replied.
"Nope, and the first call we had was to say Kennedy had been shot so it must have been November".
"Jeeze, you must have friends in high places."
"Nah, not really, it was Uncle Lee Oswald calling from Dallas, he always was a bit of a scamp".
No reaction at all, so not a student of modern history then. Diagnosis over, he proclaimed....
"Right, faults outside so we need the heavy mob, I'll call Dave".
Dave arrived a short time later in his super duper van with a cherry picker on the back. Up he went to the lofty heights of the Morgan Mansions eaves, past the gargoyles and the ornamental lightening conductor to the outside junction box.
"Crikey" sayeth he "when was this put in"?
"1963" repeated I " And the first phone call we had was...........oh never mind".
And then the conversation turned technical with both men lapsing into jargon only understood by few and by the initiated.
"Chuck us up that bit of brown single core, Vet' "
See what I mean, technical. Anyway, the upshot was that a bit of fiddling about in the junction box (which they renewed in the end) and a mug of tea each later the job was done. Which should only prove one thing to BT. Ditch the bloody computers and stick with human beings.
True words - and other true words...