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Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Real Magick, Not in RPGs...

So yesterday I was basically at my wits’ end with the UTE, the uruguayan state-owned monopoly power-company.  For over two weeks now I’d been trying to get temporary power set up at our new house, the Abbey,  so that we could get renovations underway.  This had involved, thus far, 5 visits to their offices, a dozen phone calls, and 3 technician’s visits to the house, none of which had resulted in anything.

Thus, yesterday, I decided that I had exhausted all reasonable options, and proceeded to judge that my sense of necessity had reached the point that it was time to rely on supernatural means.  Remembering the success I’d had some months back when I was having a lengthy and seemingly unresolvable problem with my baning website, I decided to take the same tack this time.  I created a bindrune, drew it while vibrating, and charged it.

Then I went one last time to the UTE offices.  This time I managed to speak to a manager there, who actually behaved like quite the human being; he managed to order one of his underlings to just cut through all the red tape and send me the installation the next day (ie. today), and she seemingly obeyed.
So that took care of that right? Well, not quite. Today I had sent one of the workers to stay there (the last time, when I waited at the house for hours and no one showed up, was enough sitting around for me), and when noon had rolled along without any sign of these people, I decided to do as I was taught, and be cautious.  I called the UTE line, and they passed me to the technicians (someone they don’t often allows the mere citizens to interact with directly, lest we realize that the bureaucrats are unnecessary!), who told me that in fact, in spite of the assurances of the day before, they were NOT coming.  They claimed that they lacked some kind of inspection form.  I asked if they had planned to let me know they weren’t coming or would it just be a surprise? Apparently, the answer was (as usual) the latter.  They just don’t give a flying fuck about anything, these guys.

So here I was, thinking that yet again I was going to be forced to go down, in person, to the UTE offices. I was getting ready to go, and I remembered I had to record (every good magician keeps records) the failure of the bindrune to do its job this time around; when I opened my magical diary, I looked at the bindrune (which was written on separate paper but I had tucked into the diary for safekeeping) and at that very moment that I laid eyes on it my phone rang. It was the manager from yesterday; without being called by me, he had somehow found out about the alleged screw up, and told me he personally was going to fix it and that I shouldn’t do anything, that he had already sent the crew out specifically to the Abbey right now. I was a bit dubious but when I called my architect, it was in fact confirmed that the technical crew from UTE were there at that very moment installing the temporary power.

So there you have it, the nightmare (or at least this one particular nightmare in the process of Uruguayan Home Ownership) is over.  And I’m not demanding that anyone believe that it was thanks to the bindrune (2 out of 2 now when it comes to magically dominating huge heartless bureaucracies!); only that everything in my description of events is true.  Could it be that I’d made such a nuisance of myself that the manager decided to keep an eye on my case? Entirely possible, though they had been damn good at not giving a shit until that very moment.  Maybe he was just being a decent human being? That’s certainly possible; it has now been my definite experience from a number of these bureaucracies in Uruguay (the mail, the phone service/internet service, UTE, immigrations, and others) that the regular union-member public-employee in Uruguay, who talk so much about the “power of the people” and how they’re working-class, seem to assume that since they are “the people” they don’t actually need to ever give a shit about the customer, client and/or citizen they’re supposed to be serving; while on the other hand the managerial staff have in each case proven to be far friendlier and more concerned with setting things right and actually being public servants rather than entitled uninterested bureaucrats.

So yeah, it could have been the manager. It is also pretty much a given that sooner or later, power would be turned on at the Abbey, so that if that were the only thing we were looking at here, that would be pretty underwhelming as “results”.  But rather (on both occasions) what really made an impact was just how fast, and when, everything turns around after doing the operation. That’s the interesting part.   The next time I hit a dead end dealing with some kind of large public or private entity, I know what I’m going to be doing…


Currently Smoking: Ben Wade Canadian + Image Latakia

(Originally posted February 7, 2013)


  1. I'd be *very* interested in knowing what that bindrune was made up of.

  2. Protection from bureacracy - level 2 Clerical spell.