here I am



Our alarm company made a mistake today that cost me:

  • $125 in fines for police coming to check a false alarm.
  • $40 in lost wages for the hour I had to spend screwing around trying to figure things out.
  • my productivity this morning at work – it was a busy and stressful day already.
  • my calm and my dignity – I chewed out the dispatch officer.


I got a call from some dope at Brinks today (Kip, Zip, Pip?  Some three-letter named punk) saying that our alarm was going off, wanting to know if I wanted the cops to check it out.  I asked him which zone it was – that’s how Brinks labels the types of alarm (glass break, door open, motion sensor, etc.) – and he told me it was a zone 3 motion sensor at the front door.  I told him that we don’t have motion detection activated as part of our alarm system (it’s a $500 installation, and with a dog, worthless).  So, I asked him again what kind of alarm it was.  He told me again, “motion at the front door.”  I asked him if he meant that my front door was open, and he said, “yes.”  So I said, “Go ahead and call the police.”

He called back a minute later and said that the police requested someone – me – to be there when they arrived.  I told him it’d take me 10 minutes to get there, and he told me that the police said I was to wait outside in my car for them to show up.  “Don’t try to go into the house – you might be mistaken for an intruder,” he says.

So, I waited in my car for a half an hour.  Cops didn’t show up.  I got fed up and went in.  My dog, of course, was hysterical.  I waited for 10 more minutes and fumed.  Then, I called Brinks.  A woman answered and said again that it was a motion sensor – when I explained that we don’t have motion detection, she corrected herself and said it was a zone 11 alarm – the glass break sensor.  Which means that my stupid dog was barking and set off the alarm again.  If, when I received the first call, ZPKipDope had said the correct zone, I’d have told him to simply reset the alarm.

That was too much.  I called the dispatch office and told the woman that since the cops never showed up like they were supposed to, she could cancel the alarm and not bill me.  She informed me that the police had come and gone.  So, I lost my temper.  I told her the situation and asked what I could do about that bill – she informed me that the police had done their jobs (with an attitude) and that it wasn’t their concern.  So I yelled at her, tersely apologized to her, then hung up on her.

Today is making me crazy.  Brinks WILL be paying that bill.  If they don’t, we’re cancelling their service and going to another company who can correctly identify “zones.”

posted under gripes

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