Featured Stories

Other Pamplin Media Group sites


Are computers saints or monsters?

There is nothing like a computer problem to drive you crazy


If you don't own a computer - and/or are not a buddy of someone who does - then this piece is not for you.

Why? You can't fully understand how frustrating a computer can be.

Computers are like that fable which, if you're old enough to recall, went, "There was a little girl, who had a little curl, right in the middle of her forehead. When she was good, she was very, very good - but when she was bad, she was horrid."

However, computer owners understand that this fable isn't really a fable - it's the truth.

Some claim, "Computers are inanimate pieces of equipment, incapable of having human qualities."

Don't believe this drivel! Computers actually have devious minds: They sense, recognize, and then pounce on your infirmities. Whenever Lawrence sees me facing the screen, fidgeting, muttering and my palms sweating, he instantly recognizes this object has taken over as "Boss" in this house.

Yet as soon as I call for the repairman, Boss instantly and obediently sits up and salutes (and probably inwardly smirks when help arrives to push a mere button and it's back in business).

So I fully admired, and appreciated, the knee-jerk reaction of a friend who lived within earshot of us a few years ago…

The first few times all of us neighbors heard him bellow, "I'm kicking this thing out the window," we were shocked when an entire computer came sailing out and landing on his front lawn.

That is, we were - until we realized he kept an empty, computer shell reserved just for that very purpose: venting and relieving tension.

(And, while I'm at it, rest assured this neighbor/friend's word, THING, was preceded by several, descriptive adjectives which I'll not include because Editor Barbara Sherman strives to keep this a nice, family newspaper.)

I shared this kick-the-computer-out-the-window solution with Mark Mehall, King City's (and others') "computer counselor," whom I call whenever this house's Boss acts up. He chuckled, then told me, "I have plenty of empty computer cases; I'll be glad to loan you one next time you need to vent."

Meanwhile, remember that while computers can be innocent-appearing, little-girls-with-forehead-curls are either very, very good… or horrid. It's one or the other: You love and hate them, and, really - you can't live without them. So, even when you feel you must, don't take an ax to them.

©Copyright 2013 by Isabel Torrey, a King City resident and columnist.