Monday, April 1, 2024

Karma is a ridiculous concept to explain why bad things happen or why life is difficult.

I had a kind of ridiculous moment yesterday (Easter). After a difficult week of traveling several hundred miles out of my way to finish up some legal paperwork, I came home to a bill from Xfinity/Comcast where the exact same services I had the month before were now $100 more per month. Literally, nothing changed. So, I called them up and was talking, transferred, talking some more, transferred, and finally ended up in South Africa somewhere. The agent I spoke to was really great at customer service and after all was said and done and my morning was essentially *poof* gone with the wind...I saved about the same amount on my bill as someone would save that ordered a burrito through Doordash (Doordash is grotesquely expensive). Was it worth it? Maybe yes? Maybe no? I have no idea. The whole process is so convoluted that it feels like trying to decipher a gordian knot. 

It became painfully apparent that the good ole days of paying $230 a month (I'm being facetious here because I thought $230 a month was expensive) were gone and that now $330 a month was the new reality. The package I was on had expired. There was no new package, however, I was told to call back in at later dates to check if new packages arrived ( in and lose an hour of your life whenever you like). And when I tried to axe certain products for some reason the bill actually went up (that's what the rep told me) because bundled all together, I guess, is the only way to do things instead of individually. was horribly confusing, and so I just settled for $295 a month which in the future will realistically look more like $308 a month. And that will last a year before the new package expires I guess. Whatever. It's all just horrible.

So, in a moment of peace, I googled: "Why is life so difficult for some people, and so easy for other people?" One of the top answers I got from the internet was simply: "karma." This actually made me laugh. I was like...what? Do people actually believe this stuff? And yes...yes they do. There are many people out there that think that if your life has speed bumps, or if things derail you, or if a terrible thing happens to you, it is due to something bad that you did in a previous life. In other words, karma is this external force that rights a wrong that you apparently did in an unproveable scenario and thus, you had it coming.

I don't know why this kind of thing affected me the way it did, but it sent my brain racing down the rollercoaster of absurdity. For example, think of a landlord raising the rent on hundreds of units and then chuckling to himself: "all those people had bad karma. They musta done something bad in that previous life to deserve this painful hike in rent." Or another example: you walk across the street and just punch a random person in the face and then say, "Wow! you must have done something really bad to deserve that!"

This whole concept of karma being responsible for the ills that befall a person is a fascinating thing, especially when you consider that it allows for bad actors in our society to essentially be blameless for anything. This whole thing (when examined closely) just doesn't make any logical sense at all and is actually pretty infuriating. I wonder if the reason people seek out super simplistic answers (like Karma) for tough questions is because they want people to remain blameless and blame some nameless other for their ills. I'm perfectly comfortable not doing that and just saying, "Comcast is really greedy and put in a big price hike to charge people more money for the same services that they were enjoying." None of us should be letting corporations or people off the hook so easily. to what I'm going to do about all of this? The answer in the near term is that I'll probably just pay for it. It takes time to research other service providers (and mental energy) and canceling one thing and going with another puts a big disruption through the way your life works. It's more complicated for me due to roommates. So I may have to wait until they move on at some point. Then I could decide to just completely cancel all of my Comcast services, go without for a month, and then subscribe to new services as a new customer to get all of the new customer discounts. It's still a pain in the butt though. But it isn't "karma." It's end-stage capitalism and greed that force us all to do this kind of thing.


  1. I had that happen with Comcast last year when my "package" expired in July. Cutting everything except pretty much the lowest Internet wound up being $65/month for two years so next year I'd have to go through the thing again. In the meantime the only TV channels I get are with a digital antenna so all football season I couldn't watch about half of my hometown Lions' games because I don't have a Fox affiliate that will come in and Sling and those other things with "live TV" are so expensive that I might as well have kept Comcast for it. #Bidenomics

    What's more ridiculous than just the notion of karma is these "Christians" who believe in this skewed version of it that if they give money to whatever church they'll get back ten times that. How many times does that actually happen? Probably almost never.

    But if it's a bad day maybe I'll hold the door for someone or let someone turn in front of me when I'm driving. Try to reverse the trend. It probably won't work but it doesn't really hurt.

    1. @P.T.: That's good advice. The whole Comcast fiasco ruined my day for the most part. I'm still thinking about it today. I'll do some nice things for other people and see if I can't let it go. I looked up if Google Fiber was available at my home and it isn't, which sucks.

    2. Just don't get AT&T. Another huge data breach recently.

  2. There's got to be a better way. I know there isn't, though. I hope you find a cheaper version for your internet. I assume you're not doing cable TV any longer.

    As for karma, I like to think of it as someone having bad things happen to them after they've screwed me over...