Tag Archives: Xfinity

The new ‘shortly’

Greetings from the other side of Hurricane Irene.

I won’t judge whether the exclamation points and all-cap warnings The Weather Channel threw around last weekend were warranted, because Irene certainly punctuated her path across Caribbean and American territory. Those who remain without electrical power have every right to use every symbol on the keyboard to express themselves.

At our house, we just disposed of the 40 pounds of ice we socked away for the occasion, and are all too grateful to not have needed it. In fact, we were gleefully fortunate to not have lost more than a few pesky tree limbs.

Would I seem terribly ungrateful if I griped a wee bit about the 40 hours we had no television or Internet? I thought so.

Then how about if I just shared some innocent observations I made during that 40-hour period?

  1. I am far more addicted to TV and Internet than I ever imagined.
  2. I’m not proud of this.
  3. The word “momentarily” is still widely misused. Hasn’t corporate America gotten it yet that it is not reassuring to hear that service will be restored momentarily? (I’d prefer it stay on a while.)
  4. The word “shortly” is subjective, but by no stretch does it mean 40 hours.
  5. Comcast customer service representatives are unprepared to answer the question, “How much longer will you use ‘shortly’?” Based on the awkward silence following my question, I kept my mouth shut about “momentarily.”
  6. When you call Comcast and press 2 to report an Internet outage, the recording suggests, if you do not care to continue to hold during this period of heavy call volume, that “you may also visit us on the Web at www.comcast.net for assistance.” Now why didn’t I think of that?
  7. When, following your call to the help desk, Comcast calls you back with an automated customer service survey, and you press 4 to indicate your call pertained to a disruption of service, you are told that they do not recognize this response and the survey ends there.
  8. My days as a loyal Comcast customer are over. Unless I find a friendly and reliable competitor, I’ll hold my nose and go with that other big company.
  9. The new Comcast—XFINITY—needs a new jingle. It’s not fun for me. Come on everyone, let’s dump XFINITY.
  10. It’s time to get back to work; I’m backed up by about 40 hours.

How many Moments are in 40 hours?

Momentarily? I hope not.


Filed under All Things Wordish, Rants and Raves, Technology and Social Media

Jingle warfare

The last two days’ posts were all about phobias and crisis, so maybe it’s time to brighten things up.

Being that I’m one of the few people left on the planet who doesn’t DVR, I still see a fair number of television commercials, or at least hear the jingles in the background. Then I hear the jingles while I’m trying to fall asleep at night.

There was a time when jingles used to be clever and snappy. It didn’t matter if they got stuck in your head. Advertisers ensured the ditties equaled product appeal. We remember that Choo Choo Charlie was an engineer. Good & Plenty candies made his train run. I’m betting you can remember the intervening rhymes. We also knew that if I were an Oscar Mayer wiener, everyone would be in love with me.

In an 2010 interview for Forbes.com, Linda Kaplan Thaler, CEO and chief creative officer of advertising agency Kaplan Thaler Group, said, “A jingle is not successful if you listen to it once and like it. You have to listen to it and want to sing it. Essentially you become the advertiser for the brand.” She’s right.

Lately, though, it seems that ad jingles are spectacularly annoying. I’d bet they clank in the average consumer’s head more persistently than the clever ones. And the fact that the quality of the singing is so much worse makes us want to dig Melanie’s “Brand New Key” out of our record crypts, just so we can find a more grating song to replace the obnoxious jingles echoing in our brains. By the way, “Brand New Key” has always been my nomination for the song most likely to power a psychological warfare campaign to induce surrender by the most stubborn of enemies. But the U.S. military doesn’t consult me on such matters.

I’ll nominate four modern-day jingles for your consideration and you can decide for yourself which would win the Most-Worthy-of-Psycho-Warfare award.

Cast your vote today:

  1. Bisquick
  2. Xfinity
  3. Truvia
  4. NAPA
  5. Other; please specify.


Filed under Marketing/Advertising/PR, Movies, Television and Radio, Music