Direct Kick to the Head

Posted by on Jul 3, 2007 in Uncategorized | 2 comments

So, we use electricty. Plenty of it, like the solid ‘Mericans we are. We turn on the A/C and we stand with the door open to the fridge while we figure out what we want to eat. We wander from room to room, sometimes forgetting to turn off a light or two. And when the bill arrives in the mail, we think, “goodnight! That’s a lot of money to make us comfortable.”

But when our final bill for our place in Dallas arrived from Direct Energy, I could not quite wrap my head around it. Here’s what it said:

May 31 – Jun 12 (12 days): 521 kWh
Jun 12 – Jun 18 (6 days): 112 kWh

Total cost for both: $97.79

Now, I realize that this is not a crazy amount of money to pay for electricity, especially in good ole Texas, but it also doesn’t look quite right either. So, I started reading over the bill a little more closely only to discover that there are no meter readings for that first period of time. The spaces where they should be? Blank. The blood pressure in my skull? Rising.

So I call. And I talk with LaToya. She is very little help to me. The only solid thing I get from her is that our meter was changed on June 12. I ask to speak with her supervisor. I never get to. I hang up.

I call back. I speak with Carla. Carla seems much more with the program of customer service (lots of repeating back my statements as questions and apologizing for my feelings about it all). When she suggested I call TXU and ask to speak with their technician to get the old meter reading for the dates in question, I become less happy. Apparently the old meter is in some kind of storage facility and TXU owns them all. But I never had any agreement with TXU. I don’t even have the TXU number. I made an agreement with Direct Energy (who, I know, buys their space on the grid from TXU and all that [still don’t really understand how they can do that and sell the energy for less, but that is a whole nother post]) and will not call Direct Energy’s supplier to figure out Direct Energy’s problem.

I just spoke with Ahmed, Carla’s supervisor, and he is filing a complaint, but it may take up to 3 weeks to get the results back from TXU. In the meantime, my bill is due and they want me to pay it in full. If they find a discrepancy, they’ll reimburse me. Perhaps they think I live in a place where pigs have sprouted wings and soar above the clouds. After a bit of negotiation, Ahmed is going to call me back within 24-72 hours with the resolution. Thank you, Ahmed and have a great 4th of July.

Gideon says “Stop trying to rob us blind!” and “Hey you kids, get off my grass!”


  1. This picture should be entitled, “Gideon doing his best CB inpersonation.” If that isn’t just like my Dad…

  2. Good luck with TXU! We had an interesting 6 months worth of documentation and speaking with about 12 people before finding someone who saw the problem the way were seeing it.
    Have a happy 4th and don’t hold your breath=D
    By the way, this picture of Gideon looks an awful lot like your dad;)

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