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BEING INADEQUATE AGAIN
10 February 2007
It doesn't take long to revert to the old, the familiar.
I always had this dream in my mind that if I were ever to live in a clean, organized house without clutter, I could keep it that way; I was just incapable of getting it that way.
Well, I've just spent 2 weeks in a clean, organized house without clutter, and I kept it that way, but by the middle of the second week, I was already letting things slide and only keeping up by tremendous force of will because I knew my mother expected me to. Even at that, she had to remind me on the last day to make her bed for her. I had forgotten.
Now that I'm home, things are once again hopeless. Hopeless with complications.
The piles are still here, the mess is still here, Lizzie tore things up while I was gone and that was partly, but not completely cleaned up. Things she knocked over were pushed aside, but aren't put away anywhere; they are on a pile on a chair.
What gets me moving is the expectation of "company," and we are expecting it tomorrow. Tomorrow night is Walt's retirement party. Originally we hoped to keep secret who was coming, but it all came out, so he knows that all three kids and his sister and brother will be here. Jeri, Tom & Laurel, and his sister are all staying here. Lord knows we have enough beds, but you can't get to most of them, so there is that frenzy.
"It's just family, Mom," Jeri told me, helpfully, when she caught me in a weak, frantic moment. "It's not like you have to impress anybody."
No, I know that everybody who will be here knows me (and loves me despite my being a slob), and I can't ever remember thinking I was going to impress anybody anyway!. But still I want to try. "Neatness" became a habit in the last two weeks. Didn't it?
Things were going along OK until the computer crashed. The big computer. My "real" computer. Everything locked up and I couldn't shut it down the normal way, so I had to manually turn it off.
When I went to turn it on again, all I got was the starting Windows logo and then a blank screen. I cannot tell you what that did to my heart and my stomach. This machine is my lifeline. I tried everything I could think of, and finally resorted to calling a local computer repair guy, who gave me some instructions for rebooting from the boot disk.
Now, this is a Dell that I had built for me after I came back from Australia, so nearly 4 years ago, from a company that built Dr. G's system but has apparently since gone out of business. I have all the paperwork and I know that somewhere I have all the boot disks, but can I find them? Of course not. That would require being organized, neat, uncluttered.
I have looked in all the logical places, but to look in the illogical places will require removal of cobwebs and reduction of piles and moving barricades and all sorts of things that you don't want to do when you are expecting guests, even if they are family who know you're a slob, and when you are trying to be nice to your husband because it's HIS big day.
So the computer sat here. And then I began to panic. I remembered I have to write a review tonight. And I have to do a journal entry and...and...and.... It's like as soon as you know you can't use something that's when you find 40 bazillion desperate needs for it. I couldn't even call CompUSA because the telephone number was in the computer (though I was fairly certain that AT&T could help me find it again).
I tried turning on the computer. Several times. The guy had told me what to do when I had the boot disk in the disk drive, so I tried it without the boot disk. And I got stuff on the screen. I don't know what I got, but I got stuff. Technical stuff.
I rebooted yet again to the blank screen and decided to just let it sit. Go do something else. Organize something. Clean something. Make something neat. Anything. Well, to my astonishment, 10-15 minutes later, the damn thing had actually booted up to the log-in screen. I was thrilled!
I logged in and sure enough, there was my desktop wallpaper, the stage rendering for The Big Voice. I waited for all the icons to appear, and they never did. I waited for the task bar to show its tasks, and it didn't. All I could do was look at the wallpaper. I mean, it's nice wallpaper, and all, but it wasn't helping me do any of the bazillion desperate jobs I suddenly had to do.
I did ctrl-alt-del to see what happened. It showed me all the tasks that were running: none.
I decided to reboot using Control-Alt-Delete, and did. Sure enough, up came the blank screen, and in 10-15 minutes, the wallpaper. I was filling the time looking for the boot disks. I found my receipt, which says that I received them (and I have no doubt that I did), but did not find the disks.
Suddenly, after about 20 minutes, the screen came to life. The icons popped up. It found the Skype connection.
Cautiously, I opened MailWasher, which checks for incoming mail. It worked!
I am tentatively back in business, but I don't dare shut the system down, so I'm just trying to be v-e-r-y careful, not try to multitask, not get overanxious, and hope that when it comes time to finally shut it down, all will be back to normal again.
Fortunately, I have to spend the rest of the day cleaning and organizing and staying away from the computer, so maybe it will somehow fix itself while it's sitting here with programs running and me not in front of it.
And maybe my stomach will stop churning for a bit. Until I have to turn the computer off again, that is. In the meantime, I'd better get some of those bazillion desperate jobs done. But that would require being organized. I work much better in "panic mode."
PHOTO OF THE DAY
It's nice wallpaper...but...
This is entry #2508