Me v. V

"Your World, Delivered Slowly and Unnecessarily Expensive"

I touted earlier that AT&T sucks and that Verizon is pretty damn cool.  I think I sent a mixed message of two phone companies fighting each other; it’s actually me vs. two phone companies.  See, with the Baby Situation, I’ve grown lax on a few things: I haven’t gotten a hair cut, I haven’t mowed the lawn as much as I usually do, I haven‘t been writing as often as I‘d like, and I haven’t paid my bills as promptly as a normally would. So after Lemon was born and after I was sure that The Wife was going to be ok alone for a few hours, I came home and did everything that I had let slide by over the last week or two. One of those things was my Verizon MiFi bill.

It's about the size of 10 playing cards. This way, you can fit it in your pocket and become sterile on the go.

I noticed that my normal podcasts weren’t downloading right a few days earlier; they’d get about halfway through and then quit. After realizing my bill was overdue, I figured this was because Verizon is a phone company and phone companies don’t cut you off anymore; they take away features. They stop your ring or don’t let you call out or slowly take away your all-important call-forwarding features. Verizon wasn’t allowing me to download anything beyond 10mb. In order to rectify this – because I knew I’d be spending the next few days in a hospital and I could definitely use up a lot of that time listening to various radio and comic personalities – I decided to pay my bill online.
So I went to Verizon.com. Then I clicked on Verizonwirelss.com. Then I clicked on myverizonwireless.com. Then I tried to register by putting in my Verizon “phone number” (it’s not really a phone it’s technically a broadband dial-up device with only one button on it: on/off), my name and billing address, a separate phone number, my email address, and my username/password. After each field you fill in, the computer checks to see if it’s really you doing all this; it checks to see whether or not the information that you’re giving them here is the information that they already have. At the very end of the information gathering, as websites often and should do, there is a verification area. Normally, this is an email sent to you where a link is clicked once, and by clicking on this link, the account becomes activated (you know this; you’ve seen it on various adult subscription sites).
Not with Verizon though. Nope. No; they make it next to impossible for you to give them your money.

After you click “submit”, after all the rigmarole of sifting through this verification process, the screen says, “We will send you a text on your Verizon Wireless phone. This is your temporary password.”

As I explained earlier, my “phone” is not a phone; it’s a modem. I cannot receive texts.

There’re no other alternatives given. They don’t send an email, they don’t call, they don’t send a text to the alternate number. They don’t send a letter. After trying it a dozen times, I would’ve gladly taken a Shining-like mind-meld.

I eventually called them and asked them if I could pay the bill over the phone. After 40 minutes of sifting through their phone maze, AT&T decided to drop my call.

So you see, it’s not “The largest 3G network” vs. “the most reliable 3G network”. It’s us vs. them. And unless you buy more Tiny Life, they’re going to win.

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