Sunday, October 25, 2015

Resolving substandard service

While watching the MLB's National League championships on TBS last week, my picture quality was less than perfect.

Flipped over to my local cable sports network and found the picture quality and sound was even worse than TBS.

Time for a customer service online chat. I find it's much faster and responsive than a phone call. After a 15 minute chat and no success with a cable box reset, they scheduled a service appointment 3 days out. I'd have to leave work early to meet the technician. When finished with the chat, I tweeted the problem out of frustration. I am certain the tweet got someone's attention.

The next morning at work, a cable TV technician called me. He told me my issue was "escalated" and instructed me to check my television to see if the picture problem was fixed. I said I'd check as soon as I got home. Sure enough, the pictures on both networks were back to their HD splendor. Best of all, I avoided an early exit from work and cancelled online my service appointment.

This past issue is one of several I've had with this cable provider since my move to the Outer Sunset in 2011. (HINT: it's the cable provider that provides a very fast internet)

1. Added HD about a year after my move into Inner Sunset condo.
Found out later it would have been cheaper to switch to an HD package with more channels. Self-discovery of other packaged/bundle changes or deals that aren't as described would be a recurring theme over my next 2 moves.

2. Added triple-play package when I moved to the Outer Sunset.
Upon my move:
a) landline number I was told I could keep when moving wasn't true, and
b) internet connection went out after a day.
I was told the earliest service appointment was in 3 days. I tweeted this, and got a call from a local technician within an hour. He got my internet back up in 15 minutes. I continued to complain about the phone number issue. Ultimately, I got the service charges waived and 50% off that month's bill.

3. Offered a special double-play package good for 2 years when I moved to the Lakeside District.
Turns out the special price is only for 1 year. In the second year, the monthly rate goes up, but it's still less than the "regular" rate. Again, repeated complaints via Twitter got someone from the executive offices to resolve my issue. They gave me the 2-year double-play package, with each month at the same rate.

For those of you that have given up cable and satellite because of poor service, I commend you. I know there are alternatives. But if you've read this far, you've concluded that I like to argue.

I do. Especially when it comes to these guys.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Weber Cup 2015

Team Europe L to R: Osku Palermaa, Dom Barrett, Stu Williams, Martin Larsen
source: Weber Cup
For the third consecutive year, Team Europe has captured the Weber Cup (named after bowling legend Dick Weber).

Team USA (Tommy Jones, Bill O'Neill, Wes Malott and Parker Bohn III) was no match for Team Europe, winning in a rout, 17-4.

As mentioned in my July 28, 2013 blog entry, all of the U.S. Open Bowling finalists are sponsored by Storm Bowling. It's the same for Team Europe. Osku Palermaa, captain Dom Barrett and Martin Larsen are also sponsored by Storm. Stuart Williams is sponsored by Roto Grip, a brand Storm owns.

2015's matches are now available for viewing on YouTube via The European Bowling Channel.

Here's one of the matches between Dom Barrett and Bill O'Neill from Day 1.

A preview of 2013's Weber Cup is available on my October 12, 2013 blog entry.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Baseball, Bowling, Betts

source: Zimbio
The PBA announced this week Boston Red Sox's Mookie Betts received an invitation to bowl in PBA's World Series of Bowling in Reno's National Bowling Stadium December 7 - 19.

Like former MLB pitcher John Burkett (see May 18, 2014 blog entry), Mookie has bowled since childhood and currently carries a 200+ average.

Proof is in the pudding. Here's a Boston Herald video link of Mookie on a bowling outing with CSN NE. Below is a screenshot of his league averages from

Geez Louise. His bowling average is almost as high as his 2015 batting average of .291. Forget about Be Like Mike. I wanna Be Like Mookie.

UPDATE - December 12, 2015: Mookie completed the World Series of Bowling across 4 animal patterns. Considering this was his debut on very tough lane conditions, he finished with a respectable 190 average.

As quickly as he learned to adjust from 2nd base to center field with the Red Sox, I have no doubt he'll do the same with bowling. I was so glad to read many skeptics became supporters when they saw Mookie bowl. Let's hope the PBA extends Mookie an invitation to bowl next year. And I'm certain his average will exceed 190.

Sunday, October 04, 2015

The Martian - 2015 film

Yesterday, I took in a late morning showing of Ridley Scott's newest film, "The Martian" starring Matt Damon.
Since I spend a lot more time bowling than I do at theaters, the films I do take in are what I consider "must-see" worthy.

And based on what I've read, the screenplay adaptation is very faithful to Andy Weir's novel.

In my opinion, it's one of the best films of the year.

It's not often a wide-release film can be well-written, funny and smart. So if you enjoy seeing movies, go see it.

Here's the trailer: