Hello all. I may be a little late to the party here, but has anyone else ever noticed how much being the responsible adult can suck sometimes? Take yesterday, for example.
I was getting ready to go to town and get a couple of things done before I had to go to work. (For those of you not from Oklahoma, when you live in a small town, as I do, you have to drive anywhere from 8 to 20 miles to get to the nearest big town that has all the stuff you need for life, like WalMart. When you do this, it’s called ‘going to town.’) So anyway.
Obviously one of the things I needed to do to get ready was to take a shower. So I’m making my shower preparations and running the water, waiting for it to heat up, and after standing there for about 5 minutes with the shower door open and my hand under the water, I finally realize it’s not heating up!
And that’s when the light goes on, metaphorically of course, that we’ve had our gas turned off! As I turn off the water and get dressed and fuss and fume and say a few not so nice words, I start thinking about the last time I paid the gas bill and I can’t remember it! So I get online and go to the ONG website, and then I have to have them send me an email reminder of my username, and then my password, and I finally access my account. And I see one amount labeled past due, and one that seems to be the current bill. And I add them together and pay it online from my checking account.
And then I’m mad. I’m talking really, really mad. Because I haven’t gotten a cutoff notice, I haven’t even gotten a regular bill. (Postal forwarding- that’s a whole other rant!) I know it’s been a while since I paid the bill, but you know, I’d still like to be notified, informed, and otherwise kept in the loop about when they’re going to turn the gas off so that I or my children are not standing there naked, preparing to bathe ourselves, when Surprise! No hot water! (Last time we didn’t find out it was off until 9:00 at night when the kids started getting ready for bed, and then we had to go over to Mom’s and shower, and it was a huge PITA!) I understand one has to pay one’s bills, but is it too much to ask to knock on the door and leave a tag when they actually do the dirty, fascist deed? This was my most pressing complaint.
So I look at the customer service page and I go to my email and I send customer service a nice little letter. It starts out all nice and professional, ‘To whom it may concern’ and all that, and by the end of the thing, it’s in all caps for two paragraphs and I’m calling them crooks and liars and referring to “the condescending, snotty voiced little customer service girl I talked to last time.”
So I’m way too out of time now to go to Mom’s, and I fill the sink with soapy water and take care of business without the benefit of warm-ness, and then I go to town, get my hair cut, (which nobody noticed all day without me prompting them!) go to work, come home, and I’m sitting there waiting for time to go to church and Daughter J. comes stomping through the living room, and she says “I think our hot water’s been turned off again!” And I said “Yep.” So then she gets all mad and wants to know why I didn’t tell her, and I defend myself by saying it never came up, and I tell them we’ll have to go to Grandma’s house after church to shower.
So then Daughter S. wants to know why I didn’t pay the bill when there’s been a bill on the table for a week. I was pretty sure the last 3 pieces of mail she showed me were not from the gas company, so I denied we’d ever gotten one and said those were from other places, and we went on about our business.
Then I’m sitting in the car getting ready to go to church and she comes out of the house, jumps in the car, and shoves two pieces of paper in my face, one a gas bill and one a little yellow cut off notice. Oh yeah. The bill was right there all the time, and my brain just assigned some other identity to it and ignored it. I just hate it when it does stuff like that.
So for the rest of the night, periodically through church, and at Mom’s, Daughter S. gets a huge thrill out of saying leaning over to me and saying ‘I told you so.’ And I feel like a complete moron, not only because of the brain malfunction, but then because of the emails! FAIL!
However, two bits of vindication: 1) they did have the wrong address on the bills, and were still sending them to a PO box that’s been cancelled since July, and 2) contrary to what the ‘condescending little snotty voiced customer service girl I dealt with last time’ told me, they do not leave notices on the door when they turn off the gas, and haven’t been for like, 5 years, according to the customer service lady I talked to at work when I scheduled the reconnect. So they did lie. Not cool.
But the whole point (you knew I’d get there eventually) is that bill or no bill, cutoff notice or no, knock on the door or not, I should know when my bills are due. I should know when they’re due, and pay them when they’re due, because that’s why they make things like calendars and due dates, right? It’s all on me, and I cannot shove the blame on anyone else because I was irresponsible! Darn it! See what I mean? Acknowledging stuff like that is hard- I get credit for that, at least, right?
Oh well. At least for the reconnect they got here early this time. Last time I had to wait until 4 p.m., missed a day of work, and was really crabby about it. So of course this time, the guy’s headed over here when I’m taking the kids to school! Luckily, I happened to see him at the stoplight and came back to the house before I took The Boy to school. Fortune and Misfortune do a complicated dance.
Until next time,
PS- the other bit of stupidness? I made a mistake when I paid the payment online. Remember I said I added them together? Well the past due was actually part of what I thought was the current, so I ended up overpaying by about $112 and there’s no way for them to put that back in my checking, so now I’m way ahead of the game with ONG, but my checking account is gonna be looking scary. SIGH!!!!!!!