Oh ADT – what were you thinking? Didn’t we already have this discussion last year? Didn’t we resolve the situation to everyone’s (my) satisfaction? Didn’t we sign off on the dotted line with a big fat “case closed”?
I say we did. Which then begs the question: “What the deuce do you think you’re doing now?”
Remember, dear ADT, in the Summer of 2010, when we met? My first – Mr ADT Salesman, you pattered your way into my heart with promises of free intruder alarms and low-cost monitoring. I relented. I gave in. I couldn’t resist the tiny monthly fee, the gratis shiny alarm box and the prompt and free installation.
Remember how we laughed, Mr ADT Engineer, as you installed my alarm, and I told you about my former professional relationship with Mr Chubb Alarms. Remember that heady conversation where you pledged that you would “never be able to pull the wool” over my eyes, as I knew all about the pitfalls and detractors of alarm companies.
Remember the signing of the paperwork? That special moment where I read the small print, and noted that my monthly fee was a 2-year commitment, and that when…nay… if…I wanted to end our relationship at the end of those beautiful first days, then I could – with no remorse, no recrimination and no pleas to stay. I could walk away with, as a memento of our time together, my lovely bells-only alarm box.
Remember how I said how much I admired the deal? How impressed I was at your generosity. We even talked about how, if I moved, I would get a new box. A shinier one, and at no cost to me.
ADT, I felt wanted. Valued. Desired.
But then, it went wrong, didn’t it ADT? It just went wrong.
The honeymoon period was over, and the box began to show faults. I called you – more than once. Do you remember, Mr ADT Call Centre Man? Do you remember how I told you that we were in line fault? That our alarm was no longer being monitored? Do you remember how you denied it at first, and then admitted it? There was a fault.
And it was yours.
You had left my line unwatched. Unloved. For five lonely months. You claimed that you had written and tried to call – but then I discovered the truth. You were sending letters to another address. The correspondence meant for me had been going to another – on my own street.
At first you tried to laugh it off – tried to tell me it was an honest mistake. But we both knew, right then, that this was the beginning of the end for us. Do you remember, Mr ADT Call Centre Man, how you offered me a paltry one month’s free monitoring? As if that would compensate for the hurt I had suffered. You then stood down – you realised your fatal error, and you offered me a full refund of those wasted months. You offered me compensation for the following six months.
I accepted your offer.
There was no compensation. No refund came my way. And, to add insult to my poor, injured alarm-pride, you sent me letters telling me I owed you money.
I OWED YOU!?
So I spoke to Mrs ADT Supervisor. I explained everything about the breakdown of our relationship. She held my hand through that terrible, dark period of not-knowing. And she made things alright.
The money came into my account. I terminated our arrangement. I told you I never wanted to see you again. The box remained on my wall – a bitter reminder of what might have been. No monitoring. Just lonely bells.
Months passed and I started to heal. When I set my alarm, there was no message of line fault. No plea to call an engineer – just an alarm, and gradually I forgot the pain of those months before.
And now – ADT – now this? Now you send a letter, telling me that you want my box back. That it doesn’t belong to me, and that you only let me have it whilst our relationship included monitoring. You tell me I must pay, or you will remove it.
And do you know what I say to you? I say this: “Screw you, ADT.”
You have taken enough from me.
I will not allow you to remove the last vestiges of my dignity by scurrilously unscrewing my box. For it is, mine, ADT. It is mine.
Do you remember, when we signed that form together? Me and you, Mr ADT Salesman? Do you remember what it said? It said that should our monitoring relationship falter after 24 months together, then the box would belong to me.
I know that’s what it said, because I found it and read it earlier on tonight.
So, my darling ADT, you can take your indignant letter and your passive-aggressive direct debit form, and you can shove them up your bells
The box is mine, I owe you nothing and I am free.