Thanks for calling Comcast, and we apologize for keeping you waiting.
Oh? For that long?
Well, we’re happy you had time to rotate your tires and throw in a load of laundry.
Even though I’m reading from a printed script, I hope to convey genuine concern about your concerns. How am I doing? Do I sound sincere?
I have good news: For your undying loyalty over these past 20 years, we at Comcast have decided to reward you by jacking up all the so-called fees that are absolutely inexplicable to the common cable viewer. Let’s talk about these service charges (or, as we say in cable-speak: “we-can’t-charge-you-any-more-for-the-actual-cable service, so-we’re-gonna-hide-rising-costs-in-the-fees fees ...”).
For instance, that $9.95 for “service to additional TV”: Although you make a good point that the same electricity is going to both TVs, we understand you are curious as to why are we charging extra. The “good” answer is: because we can. Next?
And now you’re wondering why there’s an additional “service” fee of $4.25 on TOP of the “service to the additional TV.” (Is it possible to have an “additional additional”? Would two positives make a negative? I, myself, am curious.) I’m glad you asked that, because the answer is: I don’t know. Ask Brian Roberts — he is the CEO.
And, yes, we understand the concern of you senior citizens, especially those on fixed incomes. We know that restaurants, hotels, airlines, trains, rental cars, etc., give discounts — not only because you are retirees and only have so much money to pay our cable bill, let alone eat, but because of your loyalty. We just decided to go a different route, and ... not do it. (Wow! Please! I’d appreciate your withholding four-letter epithets and directives!)
In addition, we took away yet another one of your beloved channels: TCM (Turner Classic Movies). We know this beloved channel is watched, especially by house-bound seniors, as you really do depend on these movies for entertainment — and company. But it just wasn’t a profit maker. We “followed the money” and found it went nowhere. (Well, maybe in a Swiss bank account, but that’s not for me to say.)
We did inform you (in teeny, weeny print on your last bill) that we were taking it away. But for the low, low price of $9.95, you can get the joy of not only paying more for the TCM channel that was originally part of your package, but also the Sports Entertainment Package! The fact that you don’t watch sports is of no concern to us.
And remember, loyal customer, even though you complained when we took away your HBO channels way back when, we didn’t pro-rate your bill then, just like we’re not going to pro-rate your bill for removing TCM. (I really wish you would stop whining that fewer channels should mean less of a cable bill! Our math is different than your math!)
Finally, as we’re running scared because of Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, and Disney+ (just to name a few) streaming corporations, we’re doing everything we can to make as much money as we can, while we regroup and get our own streaming out there, before you — unappreciative, complaining, never happy, why-can’t-you-just-accept-what-we-do-to-you customers — perform cable-plasty and “cut our cord.” Then our cable dynasty will be just a memory. Sort of like the Edsel.
I hope that I’ve satisfied your concerns, and please hold for our survey. You will be allowed 30 seconds at the end of the survey to express your thoughts. (And yes, we know that 30 seconds isn’t enough, but we really don’t want to hear the truth, as we can’t handle the truth — imagine my best Jack Nicholson voice from A Few Good Men, just the type of movie you enjoyed on TCM) because that would mean we’d have to make our customers happy and lose money, and we can’t possibly do both.)
Thanks for calling Comcast.
Vicky Benedict Farber is a former WPVI-TV account executive (when there was analog TV!), retired, and a hospice volunteer. She lives in Narberth.