Many of you appreciated Tom’s last post on the wonders of Web 2.0. Though I may feign ignorance, I actually know a thing or two about technology, and like most of you, use it just about every second of my day. I share my husband’s hope in the promise of technology, but unfortunately I seem to spend most of my time trying to figure out why it fails me. It seems whenever I begin to revel in the seemingly limitless productivity my gadgets afford, they break, explode, or simply stop functioning. My lackluster blog performance in recent days has largely been the result of lack-of-laptop-itis. My little Sony VAIO has spent the last 6 weeks at a warranty repair facility in New Jersey waiting for me to authorize a $400 fix. I’ve gone back and forth a million times between indignation (why I should have to pay anything since I spent $300 on an extended warranty?) and desperation since my creative juices can’t really flow when I’m sitting on a hard chair staring at a desktop monitor. I finally broke down and forked over the dough just because it’s the only remaining Windows machine in our family computer arsenal and I have fifteen years worth of Quicken data trapped on it.
An even greater impediment to my productivity this summer has been my phone-induced woe. When we got to Utah we discovered that Tom’s parents were without a landline. Two months ago they were persuaded to switch to a slick new provider who promised lightning-fast internet and reliable phone service for one low, low price. The internet thing worked out well, but after dozens of cell phone calls, hours on hold with both the old and new provider, no phone service was ever established. Now I know many Asians and Europeans function quite adequately in a strictly wireless world, but I’m not aware of any domestic company that makes that feasible. (I won’t even get into my ongoing battle with my cellular provider–I’m giving them one more chance to repent before I publicly harangue them.) After a mere three days in Utah, I had used more than one third of my monthly minutes just trying to set up medical appointments and negotiate with my laptop folks. Since no one I need to speak to is available after 9 pm MDT or on weekends when my minutes are free, I’ve been reduced to making early morning runs to a friend’s house to use the phone.
Enough excuses already. A friend of Tom’s commented that he is heading “doe-eyed” into the world with his naively optimistic view of both people and technology. The grumpy, cynical side of me might be inclined to agree, but after today’s experience with the telephone repairman I’ll stand by my man. After all, how bad can the world be when the guy who restores a dial tone to your residence is willing to don a party hat to celebrate the occasion?
P.S. Don’t try to call us just yet. There’s still this little issue with incoming calls.