Under the WireJust trying to fit all in under the wire, as it were. AT&T is still the Death Star to me. Not the only show in town, but fewer mangled calls.
“Now Mercury indue thee with leasing, for thou speak’st well of fools!”
- The Clown in 12th Night (I.v.39)
It’s just that AT&T handed me the perfect metaphor. New Mercury Retrograde illustration, as it were.
At that time, I picked up a new iPad. What I like is the seamless transition from old to new, just a simple, incremental upgrade. Lighter, faster, better-looking. Brighter smile, too. Colors pop more. New iPad? Doesn’t let colors fade with repeated washings.
Two iPads back, I carefully followed the upgrade instructions, and swapped the SIM card into the then-new/next-gen iPad.
No “cellular” service.
Had to make a grand gesture trip to an AT&T store, only for the clerk to show me that I did the SIM card correctly, and all I had to do was press reset on the new iPad.
This last time, I think it’s the exact same SIM card, fits in the new iPad just fine, and while there’s a store close, yeah, I didn’t want to traipse over there and back. At the time, Mercury wasn’t technically retrograde, enough that the effects and fallout were already — the sky wasn’t falling, but yeah, it was going to. Soon.
That store is open 9-9 M-F. I pulled up at 10 in the morning, and the metallic security shutters were still down, and the door was open, with a couple of workmen circling like vultures.
The whole time, I was talking on the phone, trying to come up with illustrations of Mercury is Retrograde energy. Once I got in the store, “Yeah, problem with the lock this morning, sorry we’re running late.” No problem. Before the shutters went up, someone clicked on music, Phil Collins, “Something’s in the air tonight, hold on…”
Under the Wire
That musical interlude, I found that both emotionally satisfying and remarkable prescient. This was just moments before Mercury officially turned retrograde, just two standard deviations from the mean.
There’s a drum bridge about two-thirds of the way through the song, and I was waiting on it, afraid that I would air-drum it in the store. The speakers, either Google or Amazon, maybe Apple? I don’t know, but the speakers carried a stronger bass line. That bridge pounded through, figuratively shaking the floor.
There’s a certain clarity and purpose I find in a young Capricorn. She knew what she was doing. The song itself must’ve predated her by a decade, maybe more, I didn’t ask. She turned over the new iPad in her hands, “Nice. Like it?” Yes, except that phone tech support from AT&T was abysmal, no hope, no help whatsoever.
She popped the old SIM chip out, flipped it over, asked if I had the phone number for the account, I gave that to her, and she fetched a new SIM card out of the back room.
Hit “reset” on the control, and the magical device was connected to the inter-webs again. Or for the first time.
Under the Wire
There was a time, old cell phone history, when AT&T was the West Texas Deer Blind service of choice. When no other cell phone would work — in a blind on deer lease in some land that time forgot, West or South or Southwest Texas? Back in the day, only the Death Star worked.
I still recall another Scorpio, adamant and animated about service, the more pricey option, AT&T, and I’m unsure what its name was at the time, but essentially, it was the Death Star, and no other service stretched to the Texas hinterlands.
To be fair, according to some eastern and western folks, all of Texas hinterlands populated by under-educated, gun-toting yahoos.
To this day, and that particular Scorpio exhortation about cell service, still seems true. I still recall, based on the woman I was dating at the time, a trip to Texas Gulf Coast, fishing trip, and looking down to discover that my phone had no service. ”Cool!” I thought. Had service in the middle of the bay, but that one motel, bayside? No service for whatever reason.
The quick service at the beleaguered AT&T store? Despite problems, I’m not sure, I think I liked it. The swap of a SIM card for no charge? Again, a good deal.
Doing it before Mercury was officially retrograde? Golden.