Sunday, October 4, 2009

The Good Olde Days

(Remember this?)

I just had to share this one with you. What an afternoon I had yesterday!!!! It took all I had to keep in control of myself. My hubbie bought me this computer Christmas, 2006. Until that time, I had an old computer from the Board of Ed, Windows 95. When you turned it on, you'd swear a car engine was revving up. Okay, on with the story. I do tend to get sidetracked, and I apologize if I leave anyone lost. So, when he bought me my new computer, everything was on there with a 30 day trial period...including the Norton Anti-Virus program. Well, I one thing I am is petrified of getting a virus and losing my computer...which means the world to me. After all, how else would I have met all you wonderful people.

So, on with the story. Just before the 30 day trial period was up in January, 2007, I purchased my Norton program and signed for the automatic renewal which meant I was renewed again in 2008. No problem. Then, in early October, 2008, I received an email advising me that my subscription was to be renewed on the 29th? Huh???? Where I come from a year is 12 months, not 9 months. That one was easy to take care of. I was able to log into my account and check my subscription dates. All is well until October 1st of this year when I receive an email from Norton that my subscription is running out. Well, because of last year I knew exactly where to go to check on my account, but guess what??? When I press Order History, nothing comes up. I know for a fact I re-ordered in January, 2009, but there is absolutely no proof of that.

Next, I called the phone number Norton gives for subscription problems. After pushing almost a dozen buttons, I hear a voice on the other end telling me that I have at least a 30 minute wait in front of me and that I should try back at another time when it is not so busy. My friends, it is 4:10 on a Saturday afternoon. I should think THAT would be one of their quieter times. Do I really want to spend 30 minutes on the phone? On my Saturday afternoon? I think not, and I do believe that is what they are hoping for. Sometimes I wonder if I did hang on to one of these phone calls, would a live person ever come on the line?

The next best thing was to contact customer support online. Well, take heed everyone. That's not much better...but in time I did manage to speak (LOL!!!) with a representative. I did not complete that transaction until 6:10 pm...with no satisfaction no less. They say that their records show that I ordered a new program in October of 2008. Now, where would the logic be in that when I already had the program? Needless to say, for some unknown reason my order history has been removed from eyes, and I am at their mercy. Why is it that these email receipts seem to disappear when you need them the most? I did manage to get the subscription renewal date extended to 12/15 which is a little less than a month early.

Oh, how I long for the days when a real live person picked up the phone when you called....when you didn't have to get lost pushing so many buttons just to find one. Isn't it ironic that in these days of modern technology, a simple issue can take you an hour or more to resolve...while back in the days it took less than 15 minutes? All this got me to thinking about the good olde days of telephones.

At 62, I am often questioned about how the world used to be when I was young. As our conversation is then rudely interrupted by the ring of the questioning parties' cell phone, it is telephone technology which comes to my mind. Oh, how I remember how excited I was when we got our first telephone. Today, we have our choices of color, shape, tone, name it, but back then? The only choice we had was a heavy black phone like the one above. Mom was so proud of her newly purchased telephone stand which had prominent easily reachable place between the kitchen and the living room. And I remember how proud I was when I went to school bragging about 'my new phone." Phone numbers then started with a word, and 50 odd years later, I can still remember our first phone number began with Justice 4.......

Now, you must remember that back in the day, not everyone had a I really didn't have that many people to call. And, of course, it took a little more time to make a call since phones all had a rotary dial; buttons hadn't come out yet. Oh, and before I go, who could forget the party line? Phone lines were shared back then, so several people had the same line, and you had a special ring that meant the incoming call was yours before answering. Sometimes when you picked up the receiver to make a call, you would hear people talking, and you had to wait your turn to make a call...but somehow, that was easier to do back in those days. Nothing was as rush, rush, rush as it is today. If you were really careful not to make noise, you could listen in on the conversations, but most of respected each other's privacy.

Yes, telephones have changed a lot, but sometimes I wonder if it's for the best. Personally, I don't care to hear someone's personal conversation as I am waiting for my train or walking down the street. And what happened to list making? One of my pet peeves is the person who does their food shopping all the while talking on the cell phone finding out what the person at home wants from the store. No, I don't have a cell phone, and I don't much want one....never did and most likely never will.


  1. Hee hee! I don't have a cellphone either. And yes, our family phone was black too. But in our little one-horse prairie town, we didn't have rotary dials. No, we had an operator! You picked up the phone, waited for her to answer, told her the number you wanted and she connected you. We were on a party line with the people next door. Our number was 365-W and their number was 365-J. Sounds like real horse-and-buggy stuff nowadays, of course!

  2. Ah yes, the convenience of modern life, Ha! My husband and I have found that having a small headset plugged into our digital style phones, we can make these calls and then carry the phones around in our pockets and wear the headset while waiting to be connected. Sometimes you just to come up with your style of adapting, not that we are very happy with it. I almost lost the phone in the toilet one day!