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Please begin with an informative title:

No, not the all the time shouting in my face to buy a super genius mobile phone I don't want. Not even crap like Room 641A, though that's heinous enow.

Cause for outrage and opposition, surely, but hate? That's kind of intimate, eh? Sort of thing reserved for those who screw you personal-like.

Yeah, that . . .


You must enter an Intro for your Diary Entry between 300 and 1150 characters long (that's approximately 50-175 words without any html or formatting markup).

Back in antediluvian days, GF and I began our cohabitational adventure in a classic double shotgun house, renovated to a single family house, in Mid-City, New Orleans. The place had it's pluses and minuses, among the latter, a chunky, clunky steel box on the corner, about six feet from the house. The phone distro for the neighborhood.

Small quibble. We moved in and made the place a happy home, place where friends and neighbors gathered for chow, laughs and tears. Happily ever after, the end.

Except for the flood, of course.

Now, AT&T's core system in New Orleans was old school, miles and miles of copper, running around underground, with a century's maintenance and documentation to snarl it around. When the levees failed all of that went under, along with central offices, exchanges, just about the whole works.

The company made the decision to replace/upgrade their system, from the ground up, replacing the copper trunks with fiber. Unfortunately for them, this gave their rival, Cox Cable, months to poach their home phone and internet market. Worse, Cox's ability offer complex options like multiple shows on demand and DVR, put AT&T's nascent video service, requiring a satellite dish, in the dust.

AT&T finally got their new cables in, and we got land lines back a little under a year after the flood. Sadly, so they could compete with Cox in the high-speed internet market, we also got our sidewalk, street and newly-landscaped setback ripped up. And two lovely, new steel box by our house

Fast forward to this summer. AT&T is still losing video-on-demand business to Cox, and are hot to get their new U-verse system into homes fast. But that requires even more switchers at the back end of their fiber lines.

And GF and I walk outside to find one of their contractors measuring for a fourth box on our corner.

We got the name and number of AT&T's engineer and called him up. We protested the expansion of their switching station by our house and explained that if they needed a less intrusive place to install equipment, the block-walled shoring company yard down the street might be better zoning.

Seriously, this is maybe 60 feet away from those boxes.

We alerted our city council member and the neighborhood association. We passed emails back and forth to the company. They assured us that we would be updated on any decisions they made.

Then, last week, a guy started spray-painting the grass against our driveway. When I asked him what was up, he said his crew was putting in the pad for a new phone box. I told him no they weren't and to call Cory Lombard at AT&T and have him call me. After he left, I mowed the spray paint.

Sunday morning, they came and spray-painted again, in red. Monday morning, there was a knock at my door. It was a very nice detective from the New Orleans Police Department's Special Forces (S.W.A.T.) team, saying he'd be doing duty at AT&T's request while their contractors installed this box on my corner, that he'd be there for two days and another officer the following two.

And so it was that our Thanksgiving week was spent under police surveillance, to the joyful caroling of backhoes and jackhammers, watching our festive greenery ripped up and trampled as a new addition was welcomed to our family.

Yeah, happy Thanksgiving.

Notice the conduit cover on the pad to accommodate yet another box later? That's lagniappe.

So this corporation decides to abuse its chartered right of way to expand his array of services in an attempt to maximize value to shareblahblah at the expense of my property values and neighborhood quality of life, without consultation or public meeting, without even meeting complainants face-to-face, hell, as near as I can tell, without even a final approving signature on their paperwork, sneakily jamming the whole thing in on a holiday week where regulators and council members' staffs are hard to find.

Is that enough to actually hate somebody?

Nah, that's business.

In the end, it was their personal insult, the cowardly character assassination of their hiring police details to keep the hotheaded complaining homeowner from sabot-ing their machines, that curdled the cream for me. Some pusillanimous worm of a project engineer couldn't tear his pasty mug from a CAD screen, walk down a block and listen to someone who lives at his work site, look at an alternative sixty feet away.

No, this corporate worm just jammed the project through on a holiday, with police protection.

We have changed our home phone, internet service and television to Cox and encourage our friends and neighbors to do the same.

Names, documents pertinent to this story available on request, if you're somebody who can do something about this.

Extended (Optional)

Originally posted to Crashing Vor on Sun Dec 01, 2013 at 06:15 AM PST.

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