A Ken Burns-Style Letter Home to My Lover, from the Frontlines of My War with Verizon

My Dearest Clara,

I passed another long and lonely evening fighting for a cause in which it I sometimes fear I’ve stopped believing. Last night, I remained on the phone with someone from Verizon technical support team for what felt like three lifetimes, but in reality was only 57 minutes and 6 seconds.

I was calling, my love, as I have been all week, because my FIOS service, for which I pay dearly, has ceased connecting me to the Wold Wide Web. My heart aches for want of you, and also because no one seems to be able to fix this problem. Sometimes I wonder if the people with whom I am conferring are perhaps the most incompetent God has placed upon this green earth. Believe, my love, that one garrulous gentleman suggested my problem might best be solved by canceling my service and resubscribing.

These calls are torture, because my ears yearn for your dulcet voice, but instead must endure discordant melodies that sound as if they were composed by gerbils and performed on electronic bazookas. Each time I return to the purgatory of “hold,” I try to muster strength and occupy my mind with happier pursuits: thoughts of you, scrolling through Facebook to stay informed about this latest healthcare debacle, wondering if I have diphtheria. But relief is never long in her sojourn, for every two minutes, the Verizon representative returns to tell me she’s still waiting on an answer, which both is useless information and makes reading nigh impossible.

Clara: each call is concluded by my enemy thanking me for being a loyal Verizon customer, but in truth, I am not. I harbor in my heart two burning desires. One is to return home and build a life of happiness with you. The other is to slowly strangle the entire Verizon Corporation while playing the above-mentioned hold music, which really is a cacophony of torturous sound that grates the ears and swallows the soul.

Dear Clara, I miss you terribly, and it is the thought of your that keeps me from screaming when Alex from customer service promises to stay on the line while I chat with his colleague in technical support, but then the line goes mute and suddenly I am, as promised, talking to someone from tech support, but Alex is not, as promised, still on the line, and worse yet, Alex didn’t enter any notes from my call into a ticket, so I have to start the whole, complicated story anew again. My motivation to return home is solely to see you, to be in your arms, and to Netflix and chill, which I know we can forever do at your place, because you have Optimum.

I remain, forever yours,


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