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  • Writer's pictureWendy

It’s Always Something – 2

Well, well, well.  It’s been a rough few days for me with my cable here at Magnolia Manor.  We use Comcast, aka xfinity, for our internet and cable….  it seems like there are so many options out there to get cable services and internet, but when you get down to it, maybe not so much!?!?!  It seems to be predicated on where you live – at least that is my experience.

With all the DVR’s, on demand and streaming (ohhh – we LOVE streaming movies) available out there, you can end up spending a fortune and not really loving what you have.  And then the service breaks/stops working.  URGH!  I have just had that happen and it is still currently happening to me – broken Cable/DVR in our bedroom.  For 6 days now.

All the Different Tech

We have the fortunate experience of having two homes, and as such, we have to pay for internet and cable services in both.  Since one house is in the North Georgia Mountains, we are a bit restricted as to what we can get at that home.  ETC (which is the local phone company that offers internet and cable) is what we have in the Mountains.  In the city, we have xfinity.  When we moved to the city house a few years ago, believe it or not – that was the only option our area!  Since that time,  AT&T now has a Fiber Optic option, but with that comes DirectTV as the cable service.  And me no-likey the DirectTV DVR.

We lived in a condo before we got to Magnolia Manor (aka the city house – I know that is an oxymoron), and the building our condo was in had and exclusive contract with DirectTV (this was before AT&T owned them – but either way we were stuck with that to get internet and cable/DVR).  We use the DVR very regularly in both houses, or go to Amazon Prime or Netflix to stream movies and shows.

I spend all day at home working and have a TV on in the background for sound – I don’t necessarily listen intently too much,  I just dislike the silence.  It truly is deafening to me, I can’t stand the quite.  We don’t have children (which I am TOTALLY great with) but when you have worked from home for the past 12 years alone, things can grow very quiet…  the TV helps alleviate that.

In using the DirectTV DVR at the condo, I felt it was hard to navigate and search for things, a bit awkward to figure out and just didn’t like it in general.  It’s been awhile and all I really remember is not liking it all that much.  When we moved I had the great pleasure of returning that DirectTV Box!  I really don’t ever want to see it again.

I Love the xfinity DVR!

Enter xfinity…  this DVR is AWESOME!  They have totally nailed it.  You can press a button and talk to it and say, “Record CBS This Morning” and it shows up on your screen as recording – you just have to confirm it.  You can say anything to it and it usually figures it all out.  It is intuitive and easy to navigate, both my husband and love it.  I can’t say enough about how great it is – when it works!  Notice that key point, when it works.

That is the trouble, the cable goes out very frequently.  I understand when the weather comes there isn’t much that can be done…  but one or two calls should fix the issues.  The box that is in our bedroom – well – she has been quite the sitch.

The Saga

Last Friday it went out with the storm.  We had to re-set the master DVR in the main room, and finally we got that working.  Then to the bedroom.  No luck.  I spent time on my phone trying to fix it (they have an app where you can restart the device from your phone – AWESOME!!).  This had worked in the past so I tried it again.  No luck.  This took about an hour and then I was so tired I went bed.

I tried again to fix it the next morning, spent about another hour, and then broke down and called customer service.  I spent about 45 minutes on the phone switching out HDMI cords and changing inputs.  Basically doing what I had just done.  Nothing.  They then scheduled a tech to come out – two days later – fine. Whatever.

So Wednesday come along and the tech came and he said the HDMI outlets on the TV have been fried.  That TV was over 10 years old, so I thought that was fair.  I went out and got a shiny new one – $200 at Best Buy.  All good.  Right? 


I plugged it all back in the way the tech had it – played with it for about another 2 hours unplugging, plugging in, restarting, changing HDMI ports, yadda yadda.  It was then after 9 pm and I couldn’t deal anymore – so I left it until the next day.  I played with it for another half hour in the AM, then at 7:30 AM I decided to call xfinity to see what they could do…   I spent another hour on the phone with her and she thought it was the remote, perhaps the HDMI cord (of which I had tried 3 different ones trying to fix this!).  She said I could get news ones at the xfinity store, for free.  Excellent.  I headed to the store, got new ones, and headed back and switched the HDMI and remote out.  I finally saw the “pick your language” come up on the screen but this new remote wouldn’t interact with the TV!!!!!   Grrrrr…..

I called again. We walked through everything I had done at that point, AGAIN (how many times had I described this to a person on the phone – 3???  at least???), and we troubleshooted for another hour.  NOTHING.  Time for another tech to come out.  They get that scheduled for the next day.  GREAT!  But I was still defeated and wanted to figure this puzzle out but, it was of my hands.

Then a few hours later I got message from xfinity telling me to call them about the service scheduled for the next day…  an automated voice asks me,  “Was my issue fixed?”,  NO!  “Did I want to talk to someone”, well, I guess….  so this guy gets on.  He walked me through a few things I had done about 100 times already, and WHAM!  IT WORKED!!! HOLY COW!!!

I said they must have changed something on their end because I had done all of that already!  But either way I was elated, and yes – go ahead and cancel that service call!  I didn’t need it anymore.

Or Did I???

We had hung up.  Then I played with the DVR a bit and all of it worked, then I thought, what if I turned the TV off?  Would it come back?  The answer to that question was a BIG FAT NO!  I turned it off and back on again and there was that damn “no signal” again.  CRAP!  I called that number back for the guy that had just fixed all this – about 2 minutes later – and the new guy that answered said couldn’t  help me because the issue was “closed” and they only work on “open” tickets.

ARE YOU KIDDING ME????  I WAS JUST TALKING TO SOMEONE!!!!  I think to myself and then say aloud that “this cannot be your reaction to me!”.  But it was.  Sadly, it was.  HE was even sad to tell me that.  I told him it was not him I was frustrated with just the process.

So back to the drawing board I went and called the regular customer service line again, for the 6th time, verified myself a few more times, explain that I now have:  

  1. a brand new TV

  2. a brand new cable box (the tech had changed that out)

  3. a brand new remote

  4. a brand new HDMI Cord

  5. There is nothing that can be any more “brand-new-er”

And it still didn’t work.  She tried to get me an appointment and the closest one was on Saturday when we would not be home as we have planed to head up to the mountains that day.  My head was about to explode and she could tell (mostly because I told her…) – so she managed to get me an appt. the next day…  and that is where I am with it all now.  Still not fixed, countless hours and some money spent, and I still have nothing to show for it.  Except for moments of Tom Selleck.

I did get it to work again, by unplugging and plugging in the HDMI cord several times after starting the TV – but every time I turn it off, it won’t automatically come back on.  But in the meantime, I can spend some QT with Tom.  I’ll take it.

Anyone, anyone out there have the same issues or exercises in frustration????  Maybe we wouldn’t feel so alone and angry if it happens to everyone.  Customer service certainly is busy and the tech’s can’t come out very quickly,  that tells me I am not alone here.


I did “offer” to do the customer survey, and when they called I tried my hardest to give the customer service reps the highest scores I possible.  I want to be clear here, ALL the humans on the other end of the line with me were all completely delightful and as helpful as they could be.  It is just the product that is failing them.  I don’t want any of them to be penalized for not being able to fix it – they all did what they could.  The situation just sucks.

At the end of the day, with a glass of wine in my hand, life isn’t so bad.  I always have to keep my perspective and realize, again and again, how very fortunate I am, and to be able to live the life I do is a gift.  So I have to jump through some hoops sometimes, because it is ALWAYS SOMETHING!!!

It will all work out in the end.  Whatever happens with this damn thing, despite myself and this ordeal, I REALLY do love that xfinity DVR!!!!  🙂

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