Friday, November 11, 2011

He is a lovely man and knows what he doing

Stadtpark - Vienna

When I asked the question ‘Who are you all?’ I was of course asking the question of the weird blog followers – not of my faithful readers – who of course are the only ones who replied – the weird blog followers not being readers of my  blog – and probably not being readers of many blogs at all. So I did not expect any answers – but I got many – and thank you for those.

But I have not blogged for a few days because since Cate went to Moscow I have been busy with chores many and varied – including those of a household nature.

Now Cate gets back tomorrow – briefly. She gets home from Moscow at about 12:30 and leaves for Istanbul at about 5:00. This will give her time to check on the progress I have made on the things she left for me to do (I think I have done everything), brush the cats, have some vegetable soup that I made yesterday and a couple of decent cups of coffee.

But today I discovered some fresh hell in Vienna. Our UPC box has been kaputt for some time. This is the box which provides German TV – which we do not watch – but it also provides BBC World News and a couple of other English language channels which I watch occasionally.

The situation has become more urgent of late because SKY TV no longer provides BBC News – this has just vanished - so the only UK news I can get is SKY – which is very average and recently – for example – showed every single minute of the trial of the doctor who was accused of doing whatever he did to Michael Jackson.

Would people really want to watch that for hours and hours every day? Sorry – I withdraw the question.

So I called Herr Steynmayr a few times over a period of a month or so and he eventually arrived at about 9:15 last night and tested the box and confirmed that it was FUBAR and talked to UPC.

I was surprised that instead of using a technical term to describe the noise it was making he actually mimicked the noise – which was weeeeah.

This convinced them and they said a new box was necessary (weeeeah is apparently a flat line noise).

He said to me that they could send the box which would take 7 to 8 days or I could pick it up. I said are they in Ouagadougou? How do they send it? 

And he said no they are at Favoritenstrasse 80 –which is about 3 kilometers from here – so I said I would pick it up and he said – and I did not really know what he meant at the time – there will be fewer people there if you go early.

You see I really am the eternal optimist. I thought I would arrive at UPC and there would a smiling person behind the counter who would greet me and hand over a new box in exchange for the old dead box.

Well when I arrived at the UPC shop there were all these thousands of sad bastards standing around holding pieces of completely fucked TV equipment – and clutching numbered tickets in their sweaty little paws.

There were 17 counters – as far as I could see only four were attended by live people – there was a fifth person but I am unconvinced that she was alive because she remained motionless during my visit – but she may have been meditating.

My ticket number was 4,566 and the current number when I arrived was 2,567 - so I knew I was in for a wait but people were clattering comatose to the floor at a fairly rapid rate - and I had just had lunch with Merisi so was feeling pretty fresh.

I dragged a seemingly lifeless corpse from a sofa and settled down with Angry Birds.

It seemed no time at all when my number came up – and in fact it was much less than an hour – so the horror I was anticipating did not eventuate. More staff had arrived from somewhere. The customers were generally very stoic. Only one cracked - but she was an Auslander and after a good talking to went and sat down again (albeit sulkily).  

A nice young man gave me a new box which I took home and installed without difficulty. The new box is not the same as the old box and I have a couple of leads left over. This means that sooner or later something is not going to work properly and Herr. Steynmayr will be required again. 

He is a lovely man and knows what he doing.


  1. Must've been horrible having your TV news sources reduced to one, and not a decent one at that. I hope getting it replaced was on Cate's list and she appreciates your efforts.

    I have a rattle in my new car and have to take it in to the service people - reluctant as don't know how long the exploration may take. GRRRRR!

  2. I dropped our eXpensive DishNET service and installed a gigantic antenna in order to receive free over-the-air HD, but its quality was hit or miss, being slightly too far from the broadcasting. By this time I had pretty much given up on teleBision anyway. We basically only watched CBS. So we finally got the cheapest cable connection, BUT now CBS has full episodes available by the internet for free, so its like having a free DVR as well.

  3. Sounds very similar to my neighborhood post office.

    You need to prepare yourself for life in America. Start stealing channels from your neighbors.

  4. WordVeri: epteppr - a mutated form of Dr Pepper after being eXposed to a high intensity gamma ray source

  5. Annie; It was not on Cate's list so it does not count - but my list has been reduced by one. Ah...rattles...good luck with that.

    esbboston: Well I can use a proxy server to get BBC on my PC - but it is too slow. But I do have 175 other channels on my SKY box in English.

    smedette: Can't wait for that..

    esbboston: Or being asked for after drink a quart of Jameson

  6. I was confused for a second, but I think I figured out that your second reply "Or being asked for after drink a quart of Jameson" was a reference to my 'eteppr', then I thought, wow, a whole quart of Jamesons, my consumption per evening is slightly less than that.

  7. Alright, I'll take public transport, next time I drop in for a visit. Seeing as you still have some Jameson left. (I can bring you some chicken, alive, if you insist on "fresh"!)

  8. Monday, 14 November 2011:
    My eyes start hurting from looking at that "He is a lovely man" for the umpteenth time.

    Word verification: ablogwat.

  9. Oh, Merisi, mercy, you cracked me up laughing ...