Do you talk to your computer? Don’t be too quick to roll your eyes and so “No”. I did the same thing. Someone asked me the other day if I ever talk to my computer and I laughed and said “Of course not”.
I admit, I talk to my cats and on one or two occasions I’ve talked to plants, but talking to my computer … I haven’t completely lost my marbles. But then I started paying attention and to my horror I discovered that I do talk to my computer – quite a lot at that.
It starts in the morning. I press the “on” button on the driver and the monitor and drum my fingers on the desk waiting for the machine to be ready for action. If it takes too long I say “Jeez, but you’re slow today”. When the opening scene of Windows pops up I greet it with a “Finally”.
The first thing I do is open my gmail account. “53 messages! You’ve got to be kidding me!” Most of them are spam and they swiftly get deleted.
Next I open Facebook and have a look who did what. Got to stay up to date, right?
And then I open MS-Word and prepare for a day of writing.
Most of the time Word cooperates, but every now and then things go wrong and that’s when the conversations start.
When I try to open a file and the computer tells me “File cannot be found” I reply with “What’d you mean file cannot be found? I worked on it yesterday. Oh don’t tell me you lost it!” After a few more futile attempts I let the computer have it ... “You stupid machine. You know this never happened when I worked with a typewriter. Whatever I wrote was there. He never lost a file.”
Sometimes when I want to open a particular document I get the message “File cannot be opened”, to which my reaction is ... “And why not?” Sooner or later I find out the reason and then crawl into my shell with a ... “Oh”.
Moving on to another file and let’s say I want to find a particular word. I click the “Find” button and type in what word I’m looking for. Before long I get the message “Word not found”. I fly off the handle again ... “Word not found ... Word not found! I know I put it in there. How can you not find it? Oh wait a minute, maybe it was another file.”
Where it comes to saving files I recently got into trouble. I clicked “Save as” and accidentally saved over a file I didn’t want to save over. Of course, the computer got it. “You stupid machine! I didn’t want to save over that file. Why didn’t you give me a warning? Why didn’t you ask Are you sure? Oh, now I have to start all over again.”
After I’ve done some work, I return to my gmail account to reply to messages. While typing it has happened that I accidentally hit the wrong key and the message gets send. Oh oh, now the computer is really in trouble. “What did you do that for? That message wasn’t ready to be send. Oh what have you done!”
Then worst of all ... power outage. One moment I’m happily typing away, the next that horrible moment when the screen goes black and the only sound from the machine is a sickening .... phewwwww. You should hear me then. “What happened? What did you do? Oh nooooooooo!”
It’s a good thing a computer can’t talk back, because after all the abuse my computer takes, I think I would get an earful along with “Language Conny, language!”
On days like that, I miss my typewriter. It might have been slower, but it was so much safer. Much as I love my computer (yes I do) I still think he deserves his name ... F.R.E.D. (Fucking Rotten Electronic Device).
As Raymond says ... “That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.”