Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Computer Humor

The same man that taught my son to fly taught me how to use a computer. When my son was twelve, I brought him to the radio-control plane field and a very nice man taught him everything he needed to know about building and flying planes. My son went on to take real flying lessons and soloed at fourteen; then he ran out of money for flying and began working on cars and trucks. He still flys, but not as often as growing up and having having a family has taken priority.

In the meantime, the man and his wife became friends of the family and he convinced me that I needed a computer. I ventured out and bought an old 286 (the yellow and black-view monitor) for $60. I mean all I really needed it for was to keep track of business inventory. He installed a few programs for me while shaking his head at what a dumb-A* I was for buying that old of a computer. I think during the next several weeks, he spent more time at our house than his own; finally he gave me a "Dos for Idiots" book and told me to read it. I still refer to it at times even though XP will not let me go there.

As time progressed, I learned many things; however, this nice man took pity on me and built a computer from extra parts he could no longer use (COLOR), it was only a 486, but at least I could play solitary. I still had DOS, but I also had Windows 3.1; the man says, "You need Windows 95." I fought it, but of course he installed it and I had to learn, then came Windows 98 - "Oh come on, I am happy now, please no more upgrades!" Well, he was the tech after all, and I should follow his wishes since he keeps my baby running. During these times I had many computer crashes, rebuilds, and I am sure I drove the man absolutely insane. Eventually, the man passed on and so did my computer. I asked around and found a place to put it all in working order again. They said (and this is true, I am not making this up; as Dave Barry would say), "We are not allowed to work on Windows 98; you will have to get Windows XP." Of course they lied to get me to purchase a new system; I fought it, but they assured me all my programs would still work - I knew better than that, but I really didn't have a choice.

Every time I have to take my computer to the shop I am like the expectant father in the waiting room (back when they actually did that). I pace the floor and plead for them to at least move it from the floor to the work bench. What will I do? How will I talk to anyone? My life is over, I need my computer tooodaaaayyyy. They push me out the door and promise me in two-day's time, they will be done. In two days, I am in their doorway at 6 a.m., although they don't open until 9. The guys are sneaking in the back door and hoping that the desk clerk will be late so I won't be able to come in. Finally, at 10:30, the tech carries my baby to the register and I am sure charges me double. We both smile happily, him with cash, and me with my baby. I know they fixed it right because they do not want me back.

Now I have XP and even though I hate it, I will keep it as I am too old to learn another system. I learned how to install hardware and have my own network; generally on the phone with tech support, I am helping them find the problem rather than the other way around (it is usually a problem with the Internet provider and not my computer), my friend would be so proud. Yes, I have turned into a real computer nerd (in my eyes only); everything else around the house is falling apart, but my computer works its tail off - so I am very thankful to the man that taught my son to fly.

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