Dodgers on Demand? I think not.
Last Friday my cable went out. No biggie, I thought. I'll just call Time Warner Cable, my new and improved mandatory cable provider, and get them to fix it. It was about an hour before the Dodger game. This was the big home series with former skipper Jim Tracy and the Pittsburgh Pirates. I decided to stay in and avoid the new and improved mandatory parking lots at the stadium and enjoy my hot dogs and soda right in the comfort of my new and improved easy chair.
I was on hold for approximately thirty minutes and then a friendly voice answered. I told him the problem and he responded with an apologetic "I'm sorry sir that your cable is oooht". Oooht? I enquired if I had reached my Hollywood call center and the friendly man said "oooh no sir. You've reached Ottawa, Canada. We're the overflow for your local call center." "Can you fix the problem"? I asked. "ooh sir, I doohbt it". Great, ten minutes to game time and I'm talking to the home of the Senators, and I don't mean Washington.
Needless to say, my cable stayed "ooout" for a total of five consecutive days. I was relegated to the radio waves, where I heard the mellifluous, and certainly twilight, broadcasts of Vin Scully. But that is just a simulcast for only three innings on the radio. After that its the scintillating banter of Charlie Steiner and Rick Monday, enthusiastic announcers, but who couldn't carry Vinny's Dodger Dog.
The Dodgers pounded the Pirates Friday 9 to 1. I stayed on the phone with a supervisor who was convinced that my connections were loose (what else is new?). He had me squeeze behind my 500 pound armoir to check. Three hours, and one lumbago later, he admitted that it probably wasn't the connections. Fantastic! At least we got that straightened oouuuuut. I asked him to schedule a weekend appointment, but he told me none were available.
Saturday arrived. I phoned that morning to see if there were any cancellations at all. I spoke to a very nice African man who found an appointment between 1:00pm and 3:00pm Sunday. Woohoo! The Dodgers pulled out the game 7 to 3 on Russel Martin's grand salami. I felt like I was in 1942 and pictured Vinny, Charlie and Rick in the catbird seat. This radio thing ain’t bad. Later that night, "Dispatch" called me and confirmed the appointment for tomorrow. I was sitting pretty.
Sunday was a 1:00pm day game. Charlie and Rick were in rare form. The Dodgers lost 7-5. It was now 5:00pm and the technician had still not arrived. I phoned the company and a sweet young lady said that they had unilaterally changed my appointment to tomorrow morning at 10:00am. I asked why they hadn't phoned me and she profusely apologized, saying that they could offer me a $20.00 credit for my troubles. (Nobody knows the trouble I've seen). I accepted it and cleared my job for a few hours.
Monday came. The technician came an hour early, thank God. Better early than never I always say. He went through every nook and cranny, my cats hiding under the bed, and he couldn't find the problem. Suddenly, there were technicians throughout the building. Nobody had service, no cable, no Internet, no digital phone. He finally found the problem, a "maintenance" problem. Something was wrong with "the amp" and they would have a crew over in a jiffy. I was now Jonathan Pryce in Terry Gilliam's movie "Brazil".
The Dodgers were off that day. I had a panic attack Monday night and ended up in the Emergency Room at Kaiser, nothing new for me. By Tuesday morning a friendly "maintenance man" was working on the amp. I saw him fresh from the ER. I offered him a steak dinner if he could get the cable on. He smiled and took me up on the offer. The cable was on in less than thirty minutes. I opened my balcony screen door and yelled to him in my best Brooklyn accent "HEY, THANKS!". He looked up and said "I'll be back for supper".
Time Warner had done it, and in only five days! Thanks to them I was able to see Darth Bonds and his band of merry men whack the Dodgers from pillar to post that day. Vin Scully never looked so good.