You can't live with it; and you can't live without it. At least, I can't.
The past week was proof of the latter.
I do not own a smartphone. Indeed, I barely have a cellphone. (In the interest of self-therapy, I may produce a rant on this topic at a later date.) While I am obviously not a technology-junkie, I hold no special aversion to it—its ubiquity perhaps. All in all, set me back in the Middle Ages and I am all right... so long as there is a laptop with internet access in the corner. ;)
Back to last week.
I was on my Apple laptop and had just changed my desktop wallpaper to a picture of a keyboard in which the 'enter' key had been altered to be a 'stall' key. The idea had sprung from some interesting comments I had read (on youtube of all places) concerning the nature of our brain's "execute" function versus general thought and the picture was meant to encapsulate this idea in a spirit of motivation.
It was quite in this spirit that I set to work on some projects. My computer had already been on for a long stint, so before opening more applications I thought it best to give it a rest. I shut it off. Waited the obligatory few minutes. Pressed the power button. Waited. Waited. Worried. Waited some more. Nothing appeared on the screen. It was on; I could hear that it was on. The whirring of the fan. The noise it makes when it's 'thinking'. I held down the power button to turn it off again and repeated process with all the same results, complete with sense of doom. I did this a few more times. Other, more disconcerting, noises were emitted. The reality began to set in. To my credit I did not panic... not the way I usually do anyway. There was a calm, quiet feeling of dread.
It is a strange thing that in the absence of access to a website the first thought is to phone a business, and almost simultaneously to think: "I'll just get their number off their websi.... Oh." Plus, all the things I had on there. All the things that I could nevermore access. Thankfully I had begun to backup my stuff some weeks earlier. A premonition perhaps? This is something I have generally neglected to do. The backing up process, however, was in no way finished. The night, on the other hand, was.
By morning my mind had drawn up a mental diagram of all the possible avenues for retrieving what I could from my poor computer. I was already coming to terms with the thought of purchasing a new laptop. All day I took to other tasks all the while planning how I might go about doing all the computer-centric things I needed to.
Nightfall came. My eyes fell upon my lonely, languishing laptop. It was time to give it another try. A last try. Just in case. I gently lifted the top, pressed the button. Ah, nothing. Wait! The screen turned grey! A little thinking and finally the login screen. Yes, there was a rush of euphoria. And a goodly amount of relief.
Since then I have run through all the possible causes for my laptop's failure. None satisfies me entirely. Also, I have returned more vigorously to my backups. I encountered some problems, since resolved, with my memory stick, but much progress has been made. I know I am not out of the woods yet! My computer is growing old and likely weary. It works harder to keep up. The rate of obsolescence in the technology world coupled with its pushed necessity in society form the basis of an incipient aversion. Then again, we need contrivances to fuel consumerism. I do admire the stalwartness of the lowly pencil for just this reason. There is something beautiful in the fact that a gadget devised and used so long ago can just as well be used today, without upgrade!
That being said, when I finally must say goodbye to this laptop, I will replace it with another Apple. The options as they stand now are: the MacBook Pro and the MacBook Air. The MacBook Air has attractive qualities... but realistically the Pro is more suited to my needs.
Well, trials and tribulations all told, that altered picture of the keyboard still sits primly on my desktop. But the 'stall' key carries a little more meaning than before.
May 21, 2011
It seems my memory stick issues are not as resolved as I thought them to be. = ( I will have to get it looked at (again) and let's hope the outcome is better.