† ... the journal

The Guest
Refrigerator Door

Now we have some magnets from Bob, who is an internet-friend I've never met, but who sent this series...

rs-smoky.jpg (10134 bytes)


0062507249.01.MZZZZZZZ.jpg (4762 bytes)

Becoming a Man:
Half a Life Story

Paul Monette

My Amazon wish list


60 Minutes
Education of Max Bickford
(or whatever it's called)

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That's it for today!


19 November 2001

Have I mentioned how much I hate computers?

Or maybe it's just Windows-ME that I hate. Or maybe it's Gateway for not sending me the XP upgrade I was promised "in the fall," which now turns out to be March. (Hmmm...."fall" ... "March." Does not compute.)

My friend Mary told me ME was the spawn of the devil, and I didn't believe her. I blithely set up my Gateway computer and enjoyed glitch-free operation and couldn't understand what the heck she was talking about.

Well, apparently ME only causes problems when you actually start adding programs and working with your computer. How dare I actually USE this machine I bought?

The more I've begun to configure the computer the way I want it, the more problems I've had. It started freezing on me "occasionally," then "daily" and now sometimes it's "hourly" and occasionally several times an hour.

Despite being joined at the hip with computers for the past 20 years, I still don't have enough knowledge about the actual workings of one to be able to troubleshoot when something out of the ordinary happens. If it can't be fixed by kicking it, I can't fix it.

But yesterday was the worst. I still don't know what happened. I was peacefully minding my own business, actually doing the work I am paid to do, which is transcribing medical reports.

Suddenly everything froze.

OK. A few expletives later I tried to reboot, but it wouldn't reboot and I had to shut down entirely. Still nothing out of the ordinary. Just damn frustrating.

The computer finally came back to life again, I fired up Word Perfect and the damn thing had reset itself. All of my configurations were gone. My hundreds of macros were gone. My hundreds of QuickCorrects were gone, all of the dozens of addresses I had stored in the "envelope" feature were gone. GONE. The look of the program, which I had configured to show the features I use most often, were replaced by the default settings. The computer I had bonded with so closely had been stolen by the technoelves and they'd replaced it with a changeling.

This wasn't even the Stepford Wife of replacements. Yes, it had the sleek look of every other computer default, and yes, it did everything I asked it to do, but its personality had been altered. There was no more individuality.

Some time ago, when I switched from Old Computer to New Computer and wanted to move all of these macros and QuickCorrects over, I checked with the WordPerfect forum on CompuServe to find out which files to copy. Well, the guy uses the sleek new program and I'm still using my comfy old version and he has forgotten which files stored all of my irreplaceable information. He gave a guess of which one it was, and I dutifully backed that one up. But...no. It was the wrong file.

Somehow I managed to get the macros and Quick Corrects back--they were there all along, and I still don't know how I managed to get them to show again, but I did. Triumph!

But the envelope addresses are just gone -- *poof* -- into thin air. That was one of my hesitations about switching over to this computer in the first place. All of those envelopes were stored as macros in my DOS version of Word Perfect and I hated not being able to transfer them. But over the past few months, I've gradually been replacing them in the new computer and even more. I've been extremely happy with how things have been going.

That will teach me to be complacent!

If there is any good to come out of this disaster, it's that
(a) I finally found someone who knows which file I should have backed up (it's not even in WordPerfect, but in WindowsóWPCSET.BIF, if anybody needs to know),
(b) as I replace the addresses, I'm also making a WordPerfect document with all the addresses in it, so even if I move to a new machine, it won't take a lot of look-up to find the addresses again, and
(c) I re-learned how to configure my preferences on WordPefect, and actually improved on what I had originally set.

Though it's an ill wind that doesn't blow somebody some good, I sure could have done without this hurricane right at this present time. But then, I guess there's really no good time for a computer crash, is there.

One Year Ago:
Wonderful! Wonderful!

(Club Photo has started deleting
photo albums after 90 days,
so the photos which were once there,
have been removed now)

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Created 11/19/01 by Bev Sykes