The first is courtesy of WE ENERGIES (Wisconsin Electric & Gas) and the agency who processes credit/debit card payments for them, BILL MATRIX.
The second incident is at the hands of TIME-WARNER CABLE. And all of this is happening at a time when I'm very nervous about my health. I had an ultrasound this morning to find out whether or not I need gall bladder surgery. I won't get the results until Monday. :(
Yesterday: WE ENERGIES/BILL MATRIX
I attempted to pay my $250 electric/gas bill with my debit card over WE Energies' automated service, Bill Matrix. I was cut off from the call and never received a confirmation number.
End result: my bank deducted the $250 plus Bill Matrix's $3.50 processing fee from my checking account. Bill Matrix claims they have not received the payment. So I am $253.50 poorer, and my electric/gas bill STILL is not paid. I am not rich; I cannot afford to lose this kind of money.
I spent today's lunch hour at my bank, where a rep spent most of that hour on the phone with first Bill Matrix, then WE Energies with a fruitless tug-of-war:
Bank rep: "Well, the money has been deducted from her account."
Bill Matrix and WE Energies: "Well, the payment wasn't made."
I had to file a dispute with my bank. The rep told me apologetically that it would be a long process towards getting my money back. This entire mess took up my whole lunch hour. I got back to work 3 minutes late and without having had time to eat anything. This made me DECIDEDLY grumpy.
Today: TIME-WARNER CABLE
After over a year of suffering with rabbit-ear antenna on my TV, I can finally afford to get cable again! Earlier this week, I arranged with Time-Warner Cable to do the installation today. I raced home from work, got home around 5:20, and waited. And waited. They'd allotted me the time frame between 5:00 and 7:00, but I made sure there was a note on my work order that I wouldn't be home until after 5:30. Actually, I get home from 5:15 to 5:20 depending on the traffic, but figured it would be good to give some leeway.
Finally, at 7:10, I called Time-Warner. The customer service rep gets hold of the guy who was supposed to do the installation. She immediately handed me off to a supervisor, which is the first indication that the situation only goes downhill. Turns out the cable guy got here at 5:15. I wasn't home - BIG SURPRISE, since the work order said I wouldn't be home until after 5:30 - so he left. The guy claims he left a door tag saying he'd been here. (There was NO tag on either my apartment door or on the door to the building). And of course, he refused to come out again tonight to do the installment. Ironically enough, I was home by 5:20. I apparently missed him by 5 lousy minutes.
By this time, I'm beyond pissed. I really, really tried hard to prevent myself from freaking out on Dee, the supervisor. None of this was her fault, plus I know all too well what it's like to work customer service phones. But considering everything else that's happened in the past couple of days, I was so furious I was in tears. I had raced happily home from work, all excited because I was finally going to get cable after more than a year without it. I spent almost 2 hours waiting and putting off dinner (keep in mind I was cheated out of my lunch by the mess with the electric bill). All for friggin' nothing!!!
The soonest they could reschedule me? Next Tuesday. And Dee advised me to try to be home at 5:00 and to call to make sure the installer-guy hadn't already been there, because "there's no guarantee he can come back." Poor Dee is only working with the policies her employer gave her, so this is not directed at her. It's directed at Time-Warner: ASSHOLES!!!!!!!!!! They've got a monopoly on cable TV, so I can't even switch to a different company.