Sweet, Sweet Change of Plans

Okay everyone, remember how I told you to bitchslap your computers? We’re changing course – start knocking on every variety of wood you can find (short of injuring male loved ones for the sake of double entendre). Feel free to use pressed fiberboard, paneling, and exes.

The internet…waaaaaaaaiiiit forrrrrrr iiiiiiit…is back!

Jack

I have a new modem. It’s spiffy and shiney and new. And somehow, through a miraculous alignment of the cosmos (angry fist shake) I managed to get it up and running. It’s supposed to take ten minutes. It took me two hours, and I didn’t even have any problems. It was just very…involved. Vista shines here, with the constant approving of every goddamned step, and having to restart every time some new aspect gets installed (such as the piles of anti-virus – oh internet, why are you so dangerous?). Download this executable file, launch said executable file, install feature, loading, loading, loading. It was just a meticulous, pissy little process that had me sitting on the edge of my seat all night.

But finally, finally, I have the internet.

Wireless internet!!!!

Me! Technologically stunted and maimed, I somehow figured out how to appease the digital deities and actually got my wireless working. I’m not covered in cables! I can sweep my floor without meticulously unplugging, draping, carefully arranging (or just ignoring it and nibbling my lip over the bad-housekeeper guilt). I don’t trip over things at 2am when that last bottle of juice announces itself as a poorly timed idea!

It.

Is.

Fan.

Tastic.

Now let’s not get carried away. This month, overall, is still sucking the big one. Work is a pain in the ass, and every douchebag and their ugly sister seem out to get me. They’re filming underbudgeted movies on my block and cluttering up the traffic. Starbucks has discontinued the only vegetarian breakfast sandwhich. Josh is hard at work both on the job and getting some renovations done around his brothers house for my visit, so between that and the rest of life we’re often pressed for time. I’ve promised May that I won’t use Limewire, and so I’m dying without my instant fixes and guilty pleasures. I still don’t have tiles on half the floor, and my futon is becoming lumpier by the day. Also, neither tax nor bonus season were as kind to me as I’ve grown accustomed. Boourns.

But this, I will celebrate. This one teeny, tiny technological victory, as brief as I realize it could be, I will take it and run with it.

thumbs_up

Thumbs up internet, I’m back in your grill. Now let’s finish suckerpunching the rest of this shitty month and get on with my damn vacation, alright?

Alright.

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Continuing Technological Interruptions, or: Why I Need A Flamethrower

I tell you, it’s a damn good thing I’ve got internet at the office, and at least three fairly decent chunks of time during the average work day in which to surf (somewhat) freely. If it weren’t for relieving my receptionist for her breaks, you might never see me ’round these parts.

Yes, it’s true. My internet at home has once again decided to laugh with maniacal glee at my frantic efforts to stay connected to the world more than twenty feet away. I woke up Saturday morning and my computer was dead. Just….dead. No blue screen of death, just dead. It looked more like a pillowcase – horizontal, somewhat ragged looking stripes. I tried to restart it – fail. I tried to do all those little safe-startup options that you’re offered when you haven’t shut your laptop properly – fail. Fail, fail, fail.

I didn't...but almost

Then I thought, well, fuck it. Any files I *really* care about are floating on the internet anyways. I know better than to trust this machine with anything long term. I’ll go grab the magic disc and just wipe this thing back to its basic operating system. Oh no, I’ll have to re-install msn, firefox, and iTunes and lose all my hilarious bookmarks. Big deal. As long as I can get the internet back, I’m happy. What can I say? I’m a product of my generation, and no internet means no Josh – even our phones are web based.

Off I went then, to grab the original packaging for the computer, placed neatly on a shelf in the spare room.

The backup disc? No more than a set of instructions on how to create your own backup disc. A futile, futile piece of paper.

Well fuck. Good thing I’ve got a nerdy friend on speed-text. I gave May the shake-down on the latest fuckuppery, to which she said “Bring it on over!” So over I went, as is the habit on Saturday afternoons anyways. I plunked the laptop down, and proceeded to ignore it for most of the night. Eventually the sake bombs were busted out and I started feeling much better. Some time after that, I remembered the useless hunk of computery plastic wedged into my purse – complete with non-laptop-sized keyboard! Remember that story? About dumping a whole glass of water on it and frying all but three letters to kingdom come? Yeah! That was fun! Anyways, long story short another geeky friend who happened to be in attendance got it back to factory setting fairly quickly. Thanks nerdy friends! Problem solved!

Not so much. Sunday morning I woke up to find that although my computer worked fine, in all it’s zero-actual-programs glory, the internet was down.

What. The. Fuck. Are you serious???

I understand this on a whole 'nother level now...

Apparently, yes. I called Bell, bitched my schpiel, and two hours later we were able to determine that my modem was malfunctioning, not picking up my IP address properly. Or some other bullshit. They could have told me it was dying of syphilis and it wouldn’t have mattered. They would still have to send me a new one, days away. In the meantime they MacGyvered a basic connection, the mechanics of which I don’t even understand. But no video phone, and too weak to download msn. Great. That’s about as helpful as an internet connection in a government office where you’re allowed to search all of three excitingly informative pages and play solitaire when the boss is in the can.

I texted May. Forget tech support, clearly I’m e-doomed. Can I borrow a flamethrower, chainsaw, sledgehammer or some other kind of destructive implement? She texted back that Talea was on her way over for gardening, and didn’t that sound like much more fun??? Yes. Yes, it very very very did.  So over I went to take my wrath out on weeds, semi-useful computer in tow for another joyous adventure with oversized luggage on the bus. May’s prognosis was: “You know, I used to think it was user error. Because even the smartest person can make a mistake on their computer. It happens. But now I think the internet hates you. Clearly, it must. Because this is just ridiculous, you poor thing!”

It does! It must! Call me crazy, but I’m almost certain that every single device in my apartment is fully awake, aware of my name, my neuroses, and the worst days to mess with me. I’m going to start wearing a tinfoil hat!

Maybe not...

Ahem. So yes, with much help from technologically non-impaired, non-cursed friends, I was able to once again plug myself back into the all important internet. And the internet, by the way, owes me a day of my life back.

The new modem should be arriving soon, beginning what I’m sure is yet another long battle against the machine. Could you all do me a favour and slap your computers around a little tonight? I’m hoping it’ll send a message to the internet about what happens when you push my buttons a little too long. And if it doesn’t go well and I end up making the news in some horrible fashion, well…at least now you can say you know my side of the tale.

Stay tuned.

In Other News, My Boyfriend is a Manly Man

Well, I can’t say the computer situation has improved much, although I did manage to run a file to protect me against this up and coming Conficker worm. Josh’s boat anchor is still on the mend. However, we’ve gotten some excellent news that I’m not going to share just yet. More planning needs to be put in place first, but rest assured that while things are still frustrating they are also relatively awesome. Hint: it involves that little ticker over on the left there.

In other news, Josh did manage to get his ride fixed, and added some rather manly accessories. Observe:

Yes, it's just that awesome.

Yes, that’s right. He found a deer head. Just lying around, like you do. And how else would one strap a skull to your handlebars than with rusty barbed wire?

You might think this would bother me, being vegetarian and all. But that’s part of the deal when you’re in love with a carnivorous manly man. Besides, it’s 800 miles south, already dead, and frankly I have bigger battles to pick. Like convincing said beloved manly man that Kangaroo boxing is not a good idea.

 

 

Oy with the vey! Those things don’t just hit you, they’ve got Velociraptor toes! At least he eventually agreed with me after seeing another video where some British tourist ended up needing 36 stitches in the crotchular area after getting a swift kick.

Next on the debate block: demolition derbies. I’ll keep you posted on any and all future injuries.

Here’s Your Sign

So it’s just about ten at night on a Tuesday. Josh is sleeping after a hard days work in the sun, and I’m feeling rather quiet. I was feeling melancholy, but I’m getting better at not letting my brain go down the wrong roads. Last night wasn’t so great, and I ended up losing my temper and breaking a glass. Actually, I did manage to control my “I really want to flip over a table” frustrated freakout long enough to pick a plastic cup instead of something that would shatter into a million inconvenient pieces, but it turns out I managed to crack it in half anyways. I know, I know, I’m working on it. Tonight I’m just quiet, and a little more patient.

What’s pissing me off so much? MSN. That’s it. Or maybe it’s not even messenger, maybe it’s my internet connection. Maybe it’s my provider, or maybe this fancy ass new computer still isn’t up to snuff enough to get a decent video going. I realize that I might sound like a modern spoiled “but I can’t live without my blackberry!” snot. I don’t own a blackberry. The point is this: I didn’t even have internet at home prior to about six months ago. I had internet sitting in front of me all day at work, what do you mean pay for it? The only reason I plugged in my domicile was because I missed Josh in the evenings, and staying so late at work was getting ridiculous. So it’s getting really frustrating that the one damn thing I need a computer and internet connection for simply refuses to work properly. Holy fuck cosmos, you’ve already planted the love of my life 800 miles away, and now I’m not even allowed to see him? GRRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!

Yes, I realize my predecessors waited weeks and months for overseas letters, but I’m going to be in that boat soon enough when Josh goes to jail (except it’s a lake, and I presume even outbound prison mail doesn’t take months to be delivered). And my predecessors didn’t fork over money for a device advertising its ability to enhance communication. It’s one thing if I can’t see my boyfriend because he’s behind bars. It’s one thing if we can’t chat because he’s just so tired and I’d rather him have a nap and feel better. It’s another thing all together when our webcams don’t work or we randomly go offline. Yes, I know he’s still on the other side of that screen, and even if it was working he’s sleeping. That’s not the point.

Maybe it’s my hyper driven corporate side, but if I’m paying for a computer, an internet connection, or a waffle iron for all I care, it should just fucking work. I gave you money and time, why do I have to deal with your incompetence?

Why can’t shit just fucking work? Ever?!? 

My dad’s reminder that the computer is in fact NOT a physical entity out to get me was surprisingly helpful. Because I honestly forget that sometimes; that plastic cup had to nerve to be in the way of my frustrated flinging hands. And Josh is the best thing in the world for my crazies. He’s like concentrated awesome and happy in a goatee, and he’s patient with me even when I’m a snarky bitch for no reason other than I’m mad at not being able to see him (which I *realize* makes no sense, welcome to being a chick). So overall I’m feeling better.

The internet is being shitty again tonight. But I’m nowhere near as pissed because I know eventually we’ll figure out a way to get it working, and eventually we won’t need it anyways. And Josh isn’t on the other side of the computer with his fingers crossed hoping for all the ones and zeroes to line up, he’s sleeping like he should be.

That and a few other things. Every now and then, no matter how frustrated or pissy I get, something lines up just right and I’m reminded that I’m still on the right path and all I need to do is be patient. Like the other night.  I was going to tell Josh about this, but I keep forgetting because we always get caught up talking about something else awesome and important. So instead I’ll let him stumble upon this story on his own and brighten his day a bit. He was listening to Brooks and Dunn last Friday night, a song all about hard working blue collar men like himself. We were in a great mood, even though he was packing up to go camping for the weekend and we wouldn’t be able to talk for a day or so. That’s a long time for us. We usually leave our webcams on overnight so we can chat first thing in the morning before he leaves for work at quarter to six, so having a blank computer screen as the late shows came on was a little disheartening. I turned on The Hour, my hip and urban “Jon-Stewart-Meets-60-Minutes” type interview show, and favourite bedtime background noise. That night’s guests? Brooks and Dunn.

In appropriate redneck fashion, I will quote Jeff Foxworthy: Heeeeeeeere’s your sign.