Electricians are $60 Switch Flippers

11 Aug

Early the other morning the electricity in certain parts of the house cut off.  Because I’m not a handy person and I was home alone with a boat load of kids, I freaked out.  I called and texted everyone under the sun to get advice until someone–I think it was the hubs–said call the energy company.  I called, placed a work order and waited 65 whole treacherous minutes for them to arrive.  We had no outlet power, microwave, toaster, COFFEE MAKER, lights or air conditioning.  We were in the midst of an emergency.

The energy company came out, checked the voltage and ensured me there was no outage in my area,  “it sounds like an electrical problem” the energy man advised.  Holy crap an “electrical problem” sounds expensive and with a house full of kids and me with no coffee and the inside of the house reaching 82 degrees I was quickly in panic mode.

Knowing I needed the issue resolved I called an electrician.  Whatever the cost I would just have to pay and pick up stripping on the side to help recoup my money (look, stripping has become a slighting respected profession–don’t judge).  Luckily Handy Manny was in my area so it didn’t take long before he was at my house.  Relieved, I thought my problems would quickly be solved and I could make my coffee feed the kids.   So I tell him and his two apprentices about my spooky electrical problem and he goes to the fuse box and checks it out.  I just knew it was something serious.  But within thirty seconds at the fuse box everything cut back on.  Elated my problems were solved, I did a little dance and said:

Me: Wow you are really fast and efficient thank you so much.  What was the problem?

Elect: Come in here and I’ll show ya.  You see this, this is the main switch and once this is flipped everything below it is off. That’s why you had no power going to all these places *points to switches that were associated with the rooms with no power*

Me: Ok, I feel so silly sorry to make you come here just to flip a switch in my fuse box *shows them the door”

Elec:  Who would you like me to fill out the invoice to?

Me: Wait, what do you mean invoice?

Elec: Well there’s a $60 service call.

Me: For real, do you have any coupons in the telephone book?  I think $60 is an egregious amount of money to pay someone for flipping a switch.  Wouldn’t you agree?

Elec: I understand, how ’bout $30?

Me: *still pissed*  I can’t do $30 either.  I apologize for being difficult but let’s be realistic.  How about $27?

He accepted my counter offer.  Although I was proud of myself I save $33, I was still annoyed and felt hustled.  I was sick to my stomach all day I paid someone $27 to flip a switch.  Just think, I could have bought three packs of bacon and a bottle of Riesling with $27.


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