the forecast today said it'd end in snow, on an otherwise overcast day. not much happened, microwaved another burrito for lunch, a matcha latte to wash everything down.

it was a day of phone calls. i finally got enough courage to call the dentist and make 2 appointments for deep cleaning, next tuesday and the tuesday after that. deep cleaning doesn't sound like scaling, or maybe they new equipment these days. the receptionist said i could even get it on consecutive days, but i figured it'd be better to left one side of my gums heal first before cleaning the other side.

the other big thing i did today was to call arris and activate the warranty on my sister's broken SB6190 cablemodem. it broken back at the end of october, after we just bought it brand new at best buy in march 2020. fortunately the modem has a 2 year warranty i was within the grace period, so i called them. what ended up happening was i spent 100 minutes on the phone with them before they finally said i could return it for a replacement.

the first call took nearly 50 minutes. i was on hold but when i got an agent they hung up on me, so i had to call back and start all over again the holding process. i spoke with a miguel (he sounds filipino) who ran me through the troubleshoot checklist even though it was very obvious the cablemodem was busted. he had me do a hard reset (hold the rest button for 30 seconds) then restart the modem. nothing. then he asked me to connect directly to the modem with an ethernet cable and log into the modem's admin page. the diagnostic table just said the modem wasn't connecting, no other reasons. he then had me call comcast/xfinity and have them try to activate the modem, even though i've done this in the past and comcast just simply can't see the modem when connected.

so i hung up and called comcast. i was on the phone with them for nearly 15 minutes. they had no way to check whether they can see a modem or not without activating it first on an account, which i thought was weird. i think my agent just didn't know how to do it. so i opted to deactivate my current modem and assign this broken modem, knowing it was just a waste of time. however, the modem's MAC address is still assigned to my sister's account, so i had to get my sister to call in, deactivate the modem, before they can reassign it. this was pointless bullshit so i decided to lie. even the comcast agent told me if the modem only has 2 lights now, comcast can never see it on their end.

so i called back arris, this time getting carlos (sounded like an older man with a deep voice and a thick spanish accent, i imagined i was speaking with tony dalton). i'd spend 35 minutes on this call. even though i called before and i had a case number, carlos still made me give him all my info, so it was just a repeat of the first call. he made me unplug the modem for 30 seconds and plug it back in. change the coaxial cable. change the location where i connected the modem in the house.

i was starting to lose my patience. most casual users wouldn't even know how to do all the things arris was asking me to do. it was a gauntlet of "tests" absolving them of liability, so that they can blame faulty wiring or bad internet service, anything to get them off the look. i know arris wants to confirm a modem is actually broken before they'll replace it, but to have me jump through hoops for nearly 2 hours when the missing lights on the modem clearly showed it was broken was a little too much. arris gets an F for customer service.

finally carlos approved of my replacement, after talking with his boss and putting me on hold for several more minutes. arris sent me a pre-paid fedex shipping label to put on the box. carlos also gave me the option of expedited delivery with various shipping options, the most expensive being $50 for next day delivery. i told him i just wanted the free option, the modem was broken anyway and i wasn't using it currently. i just have to send back the modem, don't need to include the plug or any additional cables.

for dinner i reheated some leftover congee. afterwards when i looked outside, there was a dusting of snow on the cars and the porch steps but everything on the sidewalk had melted. i noticed a large box on my doorstep. when i went outside to check, it actually belonged to my neighbor across the street, i get a lot of his packages because our house numbers look similar. when i tried to lift the box though, it was incredibly heavy, like he bought a set of weights. even though it was late and his lights didn't seem to be on, i went across the street anyway to ring the doorbell, in the hopes that he could come out and get his own package. the old lady who hates me for parking my motorcycle in a single car spot happened to live in the same house and she asked what i wanted. i told her i had her neighbor's package, but it was too heavy to lift on my own. she said she could help, so the two of us slowly walked it from my house to their house. she had zero upper body strength though and we set the box down so she could rest. i decided to risk pulling my back and lifting the heavy box on my own, to bring it into their foyer.