When a sound becomes your nightmare: a metaphor about my computer

I ran into some computer trouble recently that in fact, has been plaguing me for months.  Allow me to make some wonderful metaphor for a moment. Why do I do this? Because I am a writer.

(Kindly don’t poke fun of me for often running into dilemmas like this.  People who live in poverty often have tech trouble and I don’t like being teased or told that this is a moral dilemma or that it has something to do with a bad choice or low intelligence.  I’m under enough stress as it is.)

So this was the problem.  I was wracking my brains trying to figure it out. Tons of calls to tech support only to be told first that a tower was down locally.

I googled. It wasn’t that there was a tower down.  Yes, there were tons of road blocks all over town, but this was because a funeral was being held locally. For a fire person, someone who had been on the force that came from Watertown so they were holding the funeral here in our town.

God help me, I am brave too. They won’t block any roads for my funeral. Do I even get a funeral?  I doubt it.  Give it a few weeks and I’ll be forgotten. I suppose I can feel all the self-importance I want and it’ll do me no good.

You can try to stand up to doctors and rescue your child from unwarranted hospitalization, I repeat, rescue your child, but you don’t get honored,  you are called a criminal and your child is stolen from you.

Anyway, so I called tech support back, and told them, no, that isn’t it, there’s no tower down, it must be something else. So they told me, “It’s your computer. Run a virus check.”

I’ve been getting that line for a while now.  It’s baloney.  I got it from another tech support once only to find out it was on their end all along, which at the time they weren’t aware of until others called in, and they did in fact apologize to me afterward.

However, this noise coming out of my machine was getting annoying.  Purring, like a lion purring.  I thought to myself, “Must be a fan.”

But no, it didn’t add up.  All kinds of things were going wrong.  Drivers reinstalling.  USB connections not connecting. The monitor was connected but not fully, and often, I’d start the computer and the monitor wouldn’t light up at all, so I’d have to restart over and over until I could get the monitor to comply.  Finally, I realized that my laptop was attached to a base, but not properly attached.

For those who don’t know, some laptops have docking stations. These are bases that the laptops go into. The laptop snaps into a base.  You’d have to go online to see one of these.  It’s a flat piece that is shaped like another laptop and the two pieces snap together.  You can take the upper piece off and this smaller piece is the actual laptop, which is very tiny and light.

I’ve attached it and re-attached the two pieces (three, actually) a number of times. I’ve taken it apart and put it back together over and over and checked to see if dust had settled inside. Finally, I found out what the problem is. This was a refurb when I bought it.

Okay, okay, don’t criticize. We poor people buy refurbs.  No, this isn’t a moral problem or a bad choice. We do this to save money. So it came without instructions. It’s a “scratch and dent.”  No issue there.  Cosmetic wear and tear. There’s nothing wrong with it except appearance-wise not exactly new-looking so I saved a ton of dough.  I’m not a bad person.  Nor do I have low intelligence.

So…due to lack of instructions I had no clue I was supposed to lock the thing when I snapped the three pieces together. No instructions, just a diagram. I had no clue.  For months, I was wondering what the cause was for all the difficulties.

All the misdiagnosis of these “problems.”  Being told the fault was mine. Being sent on a wild goose chase. Being told to do a virus check, even make extra purchases…I was on the verge of replacing my monitor or taking the whole thing to a repair shop…I was told to replace my computer at one point….

Dudes, poverty wears on you.

When there’s a problem, does anyone really bother to find out why? When a person is suffering, does anyone ask why? Does anyone really care, or do they just lock the person up and assume the person is an unworthy criminal, giving the person a cookie-cutter diagnosis?

We aren’t all alike.

So I don’t hear that purring noise coming out of my laptop anymore. I’m wicked happy about that.  Hearing it was getting to be an awful nightmare yesterday and it seemed to be so darned loud.  I’m glad it’s over.

Love, Julie


Posted on April 7, 2014, in Uncategorized and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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