The Shadow Over Comcast Town

aka  A Tale of Too Shitty.

This is a great commercial:

Sure, it’s sort of creepy in an Invasion of the Body Snatchers kind of way. But it’s catchy and clever, and it works.

Unlike, say, Comcast.

I’ve been a resident of Comcast Town since last May, when I moved to my current apartment, where the management won’t allow anything but Comcast. And Comcast Town is nothing like the place in that commercial.

No, Comcast Town is a dark place. Its infrastructure is old and out-of-date, prone to breakdown, and its workers are slow to respond and incompetent when they do. The power flickers in and out, the windows of its HD are bleary and indistinct, and the city managers are known to filter opposing political ideas (even in people’s personal email)and punish those who speak out.

As I’ve written before, I’ve been planning to phase out Comcast’s cable TV in favor of other options, like Netflix’s streaming and rental of TV series DVDs, watching new episodes of shows on Hulu and network sites, or in a pinch using P2P to find something. But I hadn’t gotten around to actually canceling the service, as I’ve been embroiled in divorce BS and trying to write a new book and promote the one coming out, and other things.

Today, though, the picture went out. Full screen of fluorescent green. Still had sound, could still change the channel, could still access menus and play recorded stuff…but I couldn’t see any of it. Rebooted all the electronics several times, waited an hour, rebooted everything again…still no picture. Called Comcast, and they tried to confirm the signal to my DVR, but couldn’t find it (even though it was still receiving, because I could hear it).

I also heard another sound, that of a camel’s back breaking. This was it, this was the sign from the gods that the day was here, and here I was on the phone with a Comcast representative, so I bit the bullet and canceled. This cuts my monthly Comcast bill pretty much in half, which is a jubilating thing. I’m still stuck with their Internet service (which has been getting spotty again the past few weeks), but I feel I’ve scored a victory here.

It’s like I put up burglar bars and got my house painted, here in scary ol’ Comcast Town.

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