You may have noticed that funny in the ‘hood was missing for awhile. If you typed in www.traceygarvisgraves.com, you saw this chick. I have no idea who she is.
What I found even more troubling was the completely random collection of words to the left of the photo of the chick I don’t know. It appears to be a list of topics about baby names but then about halfway down it says IRA and I don’t know if they mean the Irish Republican Army or the money in my retirement fund, neither of which has anything to do with naming babies.
What you didn’t see when clicking on www.traceygarvisgraves.com was a picture of me FAH-REAK-ING out because my domain name had just expired and I couldn’t get it back.
To be fair, some of this mess was my fault. My billing info was incorrect because my bank is all willy-nilly with my account info and keeps sending me letters that say ambiguous things like “your account information MAY have been compromised so we’re sending you this new debit card just in case.” This means that every time I want to buy something online where I have a customer account (which Dave says is everywhere) I have to edit the card number. But I can’t edit it if I’m not given the opportunity to purchase something and that’s why this current snafu is mostly the fault of Google Apps and it’s because of them that I got all screamy and psychotic. Also, their customer service department is make-believe because every e-mail I sent them asking for help fell into a big black hole in cyberspace, never to be seen again.
I switched my blog from a blogspot domain to a custom one last November, shortly after I started blogging. I’m not sure why I did this because all it did was make me super googleable to prospective employers and my dad and step-mom (who I hope still don’t know about this blog because I use the f-word a lot and even though it’s not the case, my posts make it seem like I’m drunk all the time).
It costs $10 a year to host a blog on a custom domain name and I knew I was coming up on my renewal. Because we recently changed our e-mail address, I updated my Google Apps account accordingly and waited to receive the renewal link e-mail which would allow me to continue to host this blog on my custom domain address for another year. For some reason, the link was not sent to me and that’s when the trouble started. And it turns out that it’s almost impossible to get the link once your domain has expired.
I contacted enom.com, the third party that Google Apps partnered with for the original domain name registration. Unfortunately, they only handle the initial registration so they referred me to Google Apps for the renewal. And they were very nice and answered their phone when I called. They also sent me an e-mail so obviously their services are not make-believe and their employees actually exist.
Next, I tried to contact the Google Apps support team. It’s like they were hiding from me because I had to spend 15 minutes on my Google account page just trying to find their phone number (which doesn’t exist by the way). I finally found an icon I could click on to send them an e-mail so I typed the whole saga out and waited for help. I got an e-mail almost immediately. Apparently, if you e-mail their support team, you will get an e-mail from them with a bunch of help topic links, none of which will help you because they all pertain to domain renewals that haven’t expired. Every time I sent Google Apps another e-mail, I got the same computer generated help topic links e-mail. It was at this point that I considered flying out to California, marching into Google Apps headquarters, and kicking everyone’s ass.
After I realized no one at Google Apps was going to help me, I decided to switch back to hosting this blog at the blogspot address. I figured maybe I could switch and then just register for my domain name again in a few days. But when I clicked on the “host on a domain name” tab, this is what I saw.
Okay, I get it. Since my name is Tracey Garvis-Graves, and a “grave” is something you bury people in, Google was just being “helpful” when they suggested alternative domain names for me (FYI – www.traceygarvisDEATH.com is still available if anyone wants to snap that one up).
Anyway, I was starting to think my blog would just have to stay at its blogspot address and there wouldn’t really be any way to let people know it had moved from my custom domain. But then some dude named Jolly, from Google Apps customer service department, sent me an e-mail so I should probably admit that they aren’t really make believe, just incredibly slow at responding to their customers.
Jolly sent me the link to renew my domain name and then helped me transfer my blog back. But since Jolly lives
in India in another time zone, he was sleeping while I was awake and vice versa which meant that I had to wait 24 hours between our e-mails which also meant that it took over a week to get my blog up and running again. And I don’t know what happened but I lost every single comment anyone has ever left me and that really bums me out because some of your comments were so funny I had actually planned to make a blog post out of them and now I can’t.
I thanked Jolly a million times for his help and thought about telling him I loved him but that would have been weird, right? At least I have his e-mail address saved so I feel like my link to Google Apps support is slightly less tenuous and you can bet Jolly will be hearing from me if I ever have another technical clusterfuck of this magnitude.
Now that I’m done spending all my free time getting my blog back, I can start writing and posting again. And that means that I’m pretty jolly too.
Happy Holidays everyone, I’ve missed you!