Tag Archives: SpaceX

Comcast Sucks: The Worst Company Ever

Today I was going to write a high-minded post. Maybe tips on how to stop drinking. Elaborating on how I have video-making “writers block” or whatever you’d call it. Or a post on why I don’t want to go full-time at UPS. So maybe these aren’t amazing mind blowing posts, but they’re better than this one.

I have my laptop open and ready to go but I’m writing this on my phone. Why? Our internet is down. Why? Fuck if I know. Everything is plugged in correctly, the modem and router’s LEDs are all lit up, except for the ‘internet’ light on the router. Why? I don’t know, but I’m blaming this on Comcast.

Fuck Comcast.

There are few no companies I hate more than Comcast and I’m going to put all my hatred of the company into this post. Say it again with me, fuck Comcast.

First off, cable TV should be dead by now. It’s not a viable business plan. I haven’t watched TV in years, literal years, and I couldn’t be happier. There’s YouTube and streaming services and almost anything you want or need to watch can be found there. Local news? Internet. You don’t need to watch the news. The same is true with weather, just look that shit up. My local news stations even have video clips online if you must watch them. Local news is probably a bad example because you could get a fucking antenna and watch it for free anyways. But the rest of the 300 channels I pay for every month? I watch none of them.

TV is also insulting when you realize they still have commercials everywhere. Like the stations don’t realize that cable is basically dead and still try to cram ads down your throat. That’s a great idea and people will totally be fine with that and not migrate to streaming services. Sarcasm obviously.

We only have cable because my mother in law loves to binge watch MSNBC. I think she also watches shitty Hallmark movies but from what I’ve heard the TV is always on MSNBC. That’s seriously the only reason we still have cable; she loves the news. We’re paying to watch like four channels at most.

She’s also the reason we use Comcast for our land line phone. Yes. Land line. In case you don’t know, these are phones that are wired to your house just like was standard in 1992. She has a cell phone, but has some fear that people who need to contact her at the house number won’t be able to if we get rid of it. Nevermind transferring the number. Nevermind telling people your new number. Let’s just keep the landline. I’m not really bitching about her but bitching about how Comcast is somehow relying on shit like this to stay in business. Like their entire business model is preying on people who are set in their ways and won’t change anytime soon.

More bitching about Comcast: bundles.

Hang on. Our internet is back on. Let me migrate from my phone to an actual computer and keyboard. Fucking Comcast internet, fucking piece of shit!

Ah, that’s better. But where the hell was I? Fucking Comcast breaking my concentration and shit. Oh yeah, bundles! We only need Comcast for internet really, at least that’s the primary reason. As I’ve said, the phone and cable can fuck right off (if my MIL didn’t love them so much), but we need internet. Internet is basically like electricity and gas now, it’s a utility. But when you call and ask Comcast for internet, they do some voodoo shit on you. “Ah, yes sir, we can get you internet. In fact we can get you the Comcast Triple Play with Xfinity™ XD Bullshit for only $79.99 for the first twelve months! Only for you sir! You see internet by itself is like $60 per month, so for $19.99 more you can get cable and TV!”

“Okay, whatever.” And then you forget about it. You got your phone, internet, and cable all for cheap as shit and are saving money. Then the ‘introductory period’ is passed and your bill skyrockets up to $170 per month: only a 112% increase, totally not a big deal. They even raise the price slowly over a few months so you don’t get spooked. $20 here and there and that’s not too bad until it settles near $200. It’s some shady shit.

My point is Comcast bundles this shit to make it harder for you to leave. It’s bullshit too. Let’s say we did want to cancel our landline phone; then we’d probably be in the Comcast Double Play Xfinity™ XD plan and it’d probably still cost like $150 for some reason. It’s almost not worth the effort to try, and that’s coming from someone who is super fucking cheap and loves saving money.

Let’s also acknowledge how stupid Xfinity™ sounds. Xfinity™. It’s like they tried to create a fancy sounding word, the -finity in Xfinity coming from the amazing word and concept infinity and plopping an X at the front because X is by far the most unique letter of the alphabet — but damn does it sound stupid. It reminds me of when Verizon purchased Yahoo and renamed the company Oath. Seriously. Oath.

And let’s talk about when you do try to lower your bill. Some people have success in calling Comcast threatening to cancel their service and can sometimes get back into the introductory plan. But this takes effort and talking on the phone and I haven’t had luck with it. I usually try to be nice — “Times are tough and is there any way I can lower my bill?” — but they call my shit each time. They know I’m a passive little bitch who doesn’t like confrontation, and I wouldn’t be surprised if they troll through my internet history (like what I’m writing now) to know my weaknesses. (Maybe that’s a bit over-the-top paranoid, but it’s Comcast: you never know!) We went to slower internet last year and I shaved off like $20. Sure, money saved, but it doesn’t feel as successful as locking in that $79.99 for another year.

Another fun fact: you can upgrade your plan on their website — it’s really easy! — but you cannot downgrade it. Anytime you want to downgrade you have to call Comcast’s customer service. Because they know most people don’t want to fuck around with calling them and talking to someone on the other side of the world. Of course Comcast has outsourced all customer service to foreign countries — it makes sense business-wise — but sometimes it’s pretty fuck hard to understand what they’re saying. I’m not hating on people that have difficulty speaking English here, but you know Comcast is aware this makes calling customer service slightly more of a pain-in-the-ass than it already is.

I’d say my biggest gripe about Comcast is how they lord over their customers and business. They act like you don’t have any other choice, and if you do find a better deal you can fuck right off, they don’t actually care about their customers or keeping them, only tossing out introductory deals at the very last moment before someone leaves. They’re abusive as fuck. Introductory prices, bundles, all of this shit to gaslight you into thinking you’re getting a good deal and then they fuck you. Hard. In the ass. You could probably find a few videos about Comcast in the BDSM section of Pornhub. And if you don’t like being violently sodomized you can find another provider except there is no other ISP in the area! Oh, poor customers, we’re sorry but we’re going to have to raise your bill another $20 because reasons.

***

I signed up for SpaceX’s Starlink internet service a few months ago. Service isn’t offered in our area yet but the email stated “mid-2021.” I happily paid the $100 deposit and will happily pay the $500 for the antenna when service is available. Hell, I’ll happily pay the $100 per month for the service too. Why? Because it’s SpaceX. They’re innovating. They’re doing some crazy shit in rocketry. They land rockets! They’re literally trying to get humans to Mars! This is some cool shit and I’d love to dump money into them rather than Comcast because Comcast is such a shitty company. What’s Comcast’s lofty goals? Fleece their customers as much as they can for as long as they can before they wise up and jump ship. Like my personal economics don’t even matter here — I’ll take the more expensive internet option just because Fuck Comcast. I seriously fantasize about the day when I get Starlink internet and can call Comcast and tell them to go fuck themselves. Sure we’ll have to figure out what to do about cable and phone — maybe Comshit can get us a cheaper deal on those two — but even this will be a victory.

From the seething hatred in the bottom of my blackened and dead heart and soul, with all the rage and latent anger that has slowly built up over the years:

FUCK COMCAST.

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An Associates Degree Is Useless

One of my goals during my vacation was to seriously explore other jobs. I currently work a part-time union job at UPS which I honestly feel is below my capabilities. I do think I’m intelligent and clever and working at UPS shipping packages seems so anticlimactic to what I think — and somehow know — my real potential is. The entire issue for me is how to realize this potential which I seem totally unable to do through insecurities or indecisiveness. I think my life can mean more than working a part-time job at UPS and I’m trying to find out what that more actually is.

(Big NOTE here on how I seem to be defining my self-worth based on what job I work. I know if you take this too far it’s dangerous — we’re all more than our jobs — but if you don’t take it far enough you’d be making the opposite mistake. There is no way I can be working at UPS in 20 years and feel happy about it. I just can’t. It’s inevitable that I’d feel like I squandered my life. If you are happy working whatever shitty job you have, great, I’m actually jealous of people that can do this. I think I’m hopelessly not one of these people.)

I started looking for piloting jobs to no avail. I have a commercial pilot’s license which means theoretically I can get paid to fly, but it doesn’t really work out that way in the real world. I can’t be an airline pilot (they require 1,500 hours) and I can’t fly a multi-engine airplane. Those alone cut me out of like 97% of all jobs. Did I find anything I could do? No. They all require things slightly above my current experience, like 1,000 hours, 2,000, or whatever. I have a commercial pilot’s license but can’t do a damn thing with it realistically. Luckily I knew this when I got the license; the commercial license is basically useless unless you know someone to hook you up with a job and mostly serves as a stepping stone to other certifications.

I checked out a few other places. Jobs at the local Amazon facility; maybe I could be a delivery driver or something? No. Nothing. The only positions opened were entry level grunt work warehouse bullshit (that I’m unwilling to settle for, especially since I worked there five years ago) or mid/upper management work that I’m nowhere near qualified for. There was nothing for me, me being the sort of not-a-high-school-kid but also not 40-with-a college-degree-and-work-experience. I’m someone caught between being a high school graduate and a college graduate.

Because I have an Associates Degree in Science. Yay?!

I checked a few other random places like Thermo Fisher Scientific. They had some more entry level positions (‘Associate Manufacturing Technician’) and some upper-level positions, but once again nothing that fit my shitty mid‐tier associate degree of science. Once again, I don’t want to work a job that someone with a high school diploma or a GED could do but wasn’t qualified to do any of the higher-level work such as what an ‘Organic Synthesis Chemist’ would do.

And onto fucking SpaceX if you can believe it. Why the hell not? Let’s see what jobs they offer. Once again there was the same split between entry-level work and expert work. Most of the jobs required a Bachelor’s or higher while a few remaining jobs only required a high school diploma with nothing in between. I could be a SpaceX ‘Barista’ but couldn’t be a ‘GNC Satellite Attitude Determination & Control Engineer’. I couldn’t find a single job mentioning an associate degree and felt trapped between the poles of being under qualified and overqualified for anything. 

Granted I only looked at a handful of jobs, but I feel this could confirm what my cynical friend has said about his own associates degrees: they’re glorified high school diplomas. They offer nothing in the way of benefits and only serve as a stepping stone to higher degrees. An associates degree is apparently only useful if you grab it on your way to a bachelor’s degree. And I don’t know how I feel about this.

I went back to school around the age of 27 or so after dropping out of college around 20. I wanted to say that I went back to college and actually did something with my life. And I did. I got my damn degree in the mail one day without the fluff and bullshit of a graduation ceremony. All that mattered to me was the degree and I didn’t feel the need to share the success with my friends and family. Who cares? It’s not a big deal really. I showed up, did the work, and got my degree. But when I found it in the mail one day I did feel something. The final realization that “I did it? I did it.” That I finally accomplished something in life after slacking for a decade. I didn’t know what I’d do with it at the time but surely I’d figure it out.

Cut to today. 34 years old and checking out random jobs and realizing my associates degree is totally useless. All that matters is the Bachelor’s and higher. I’m basically a glorified high school student with no practical life benefits to having obtained this degree. It’s not a good feeling to know what you’ve accomplished isn’t enough and there’s always more to do. Countless other people that are more accomplished than you that have life seemingly more figure out than you and get actually get through life. And here I am writing some shitty blog complaining about it all. Should I work towards a bachelor’s degree in whatever or keep trying to bullshit some piloting job? With no clear way forward, what do you choose? As always if someone has answers to these questions, please fill me in because I’m fucking clueless.

And if you found a good job with an associates degree, what the hell was it?

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The Tesla Cybertruck…Sucks?

Elon Musk is a strange and unique individual, at least as far as billionaires go. We always seem to view most billionaires as kinda old, stuffy, and reserved people. I’m talking the Bill Gates, the Warren Buffetts, and the Jeff Bezos of the world. You never get a sense of them as a person unless you happen to read a biography about them. I know Bill Gates is a nice enough guy with how much him and his wife donate to causes that benefit society, and I know that Buffett is notoriously cheap and humble, and I get the impression that Bezos is a shrewd businessman who likes to hide in the shadows. Bezos seems like a James Bond villain if anything. These are just impressions though and I don’t know if I’m correct or not. But Elon? Elon seems to be cut from a different mold, for better or for worse even if he himself seems like a perfect Bond villain.

To get a feel for this fact all you need to do is check Elon Musk’s Twitter feed. He is a notorious shitposter that can hold his own with the best of shitposters. He seems like a normal enough person — eccentric perhaps — despite his multiple companies and his north-of-a-billion-dollar net worth. Elon also plays the meme game as well as anyone else. Does anyone remember the famous “$420, funding secured” debacle that led him into trouble with the SEC? Or the multitude of anime cat girls that Elon posts for whatever reason? He launched his Roadster into space because why not? I vaguely recall something about the WallStreetBets subreddit and Elon posting the “stonks” meme. And let’s not forget the whole Joe Rogan podcast pot smoking thing either; this incident alone seemed to solidify Elon’s presence in a sort of meme hall of fame. Hell, I even have a few pictures using this to hilarious degree.

HOTBOXIN’

Elon seems like a typical person who somehow, perhaps even due to sheer luck, was successful. One thing you have to give Elon credit for is his ability to mostly follow through with what he says, at least in the grand scheme of things. His idea with Tesla was to make electric cars popular, cool, and desirable, and to change the image of the EV for the better; this has been a success. Elon is literally trying to save the world with Tesla despite also trying to make a shit ton of money in the process. With SpaceX he is trying to revolutionize space travel by making rockets reusable, with the end goal being the colonization of Mars. In the nearly 60+ years of space travel no one has seriously attempted to make a reusable launch vehicle or land people on Mars but Musky Boi seems to be pulling off. While he over promises here and there, has notoriously unrealistic deadlines, he generally seems to do whatever crazy shit he sets out to do when he is serious about doing so. When Elon says something (or Tweets something) he is either being dead serious, joking, memeing, shitposting, daydreaming, thinking aloud, or overpromising. This is perfectly illustrated by the Tesla Cybertruck.

He had been hinting about the truck for awhile now, and while I wasn’t following the details of it, he seemed to hint that it would be a “unique” design. He called it, obviously, the Cybertruck, but everyone thought, “How ‘Cyber’ could it be? And what does that even mean?” Surely Elon was just being a bit over the top with the description to stir up hype for the new model. He also said the design was “futuristic” but once again what exactly did that mean? Everyone was well aware of Tesla’s design philosophy and seeing the model S, 3, X, and Y (yes, it does spell out S3XY, because that’s the kinda jokester Musk is) leaves you with a general idea of what to expect from the Tesla Truck. People waiting in anticipation to see what the famed Tesla Truck would look like, and it looks like this:

Stolen with love from the Tesla website.

Yeehaw.

I didn’t watch the event live and only heard about it from the multitude of memes and jokes made about the design in the following hours/days on social media, especially Reddit. It was one of those moments where I thought, “Wait, really? That is the actual truck? It has to be joke, right?” And I still feel that way actually. A part of my mind is thinking that, yes, maybe this is a joke, a cheap way to make news and for Elon to catch more headlines. Making this even more “obvious” is the fact that when demonstrating the “unbreakable windows” of the truck, the windows shattered. Twice. You can’t make this shit up even if you were trying to write a fictional comedic story. This couldn’t be the actual Tesla Cybertruck, right? In my mind, I saw this as a “joke” presentation, and after popular consumer outrage over the next few months Tesla would “redesign” the truck into some BOMBASS design where everyone sighs and says, “Whew. That’s better. Okay.”

But this is Elon we’re talking about, so who the hell knows what is going on. You have to give Elon credit for pulling off something so blatantly hideous and counterintuitive that you both question his sanity and question your own sanity. “If Elon thought this was a good idea, who is wrong here? Does he know something about what people want that even people don’t? Or is he just fucking insane?” I’m actually leaning towards the former: this is the actual Cybertruck — seriously — and Elon is betting hard on such a radical design. I’m almost certain now that Musk sees this as a way forward to differentiate the truck from other trucks. It is unabashedly utilitarian contrasting with the current truck culture that sometimes uses trucks as as much of a fashion and status symbol more so than an actual mode of transportation that has utility. The truck is also very minimalist and lacks any identifying features, besides the wonderfully hideous and angular design of the thing. It isn’t stylish at all, and this separates it from the purposefully stylish models of every other vehicle manufacturer. I find it stylish in a sort of anti-stylish way. So terribly ugly that it begins to look cool after a while.

I don’t know if I’ve drank the Elon Kool-aid too much over the past years in regards to what Tesla and SpaceX has accomplished, but I’m actually starting to come around the Cybertruck’s, uh, “unconventional” design. I mean I still find the thing hideous and atrocious, but something about it, something, is growing on me. I can’t really explain it. I picture these trucks roaming my city in a few years and just being blown away by how off the thing would appear. Most vehicles are designed in the same basic way and the only differences between brands is slight styling changes here and there. The front of a Dodge Ram. The Kia’s angled and jagged grill. I can’t even give examples because I can’t think of them really. Everything is so samey that seeing a fucking Tesla Cybertruck at all will be a shocker. If you own a Cybertruck everyone will notice.

So Elon Musk and his Tesla Cybertruck. Is it simply and example of Elon knowing what the future wants even though everyone else isn’t even aware of it? Is this terribly hideious design of the Cybertruck the best choice Tesla has ever made or will it be seen in a few years as a terrible mistake from the automaker? Is Elon just plain fucking crazy or is there something concrete behind his apparently craziness? i don’t know, but I do know that while I do find the design disgusting, even after less than a week something about it attracts me. It’s awful and angular design is starting to grown on me for some reason or another. What will the truth be in 2025 when the Cybertruck has been around for a few year. Will it be a success or a resounding failure. I don’t know, but I’m curious to find out.