Not Retro nor Food

Well, perhaps a bit retro because I am using an old computer to write this post. You see, my computer, the one I welcomed into my home on January 1 and finally bonded with is now in the hospital. Ok, so it is in the hands of the Geek Squad.

It has always had one quirk–if you move it–the mute button un-mutes. About a month or so ago, it stopped typing until it warmed up after shutdown. No big deal, I don’t like to wake up forcibly either. I didn’t take it to the Geek Squad then.

But yesterday, bad things happened. It got sick. Seriously, horridly sick, flashing a billion messages, black screen of death, rebooted itself and well, came back with a special new program saying YOUR COMPUTER IS DEAD!!!!! I flapped my hands and screamed through the house. This did not make Denise happy. She was on a phone meeting and not muted. (Hi to everyone who heard my wails! You look awful pretty today!)

I then took the computer and showed her. She said take it to the Geek Squad. I growled and sighed and wiped the screen. I found my receipt. I packed it in my special laptop bag (AOL-BlogHer Chicago 2007-best laptop bag ever even if it is a bit small for my widescreened laptop) I went to the Best Buy. I got stickered at the door. Sticker Clerk pointed me to Geek Squad area. I went and waited and wondered if I should be in the other line but that said customer service. I needed a geek.

Geek guy came out finally. (Ok so maybe 5 min., but this is MY COMPUTER we are talking about! Life or death!) I explained the issue. He looked puzzled by my keyboard issue and by my Firefox issue (which I know how to fix, I just haven’t because it seems more productive to restart FF). Then I told him the HORRIBLE PART.

He asked if I had bought the computer there. Yes–in January!  January First. He said “I will look up your purchase!” I said “I have a receipt!”  He seemed surprised and looked at it. “January 1-well look at that!” He said “That will save you the 69.99 diagnostic fee” He turned on the computer. He asked for the power cord. (which I hadn’t dusted–oops) He looked at it and grinned.  You have a virus. Uh what? I don’t GET viruses. I am a safe computer user! Viruses don’t look like that anyway. He raised his eyebrows at me.

“Ok, so I can take it home and remove it myself.” “You can try but everyone who has comes back and it takes us THREE DAYS to remove it” “Three days?!?!?!” And then I remember–my computer anti-virus program requires the computer to talk to the Internet–something it obviously WON’T do at this point since it tells me I have no hard drive or anything else when I try to open a browser. Sigh. We talk some more.

I signed papers. (like filling out intake at the hospital ER actually) He kindly stickered everything with my name, assuring me it wouldn’t get lost. (uh huh-that powerbrick should have TWO stickers and really, I don’t want the special Best Buy special hey you have a virus alerter because everyone I know hates it but no choice there.)

He says that they will do a full diagnostic and figure out the keyboard issue. If it requires parts and he thinks it will–it could be longer…”But that will be covered under warranty” (crossing my fingers there–I have always thought the keyboard issue might be my fault–too many meals at the desk–too many times it went into the kitchen, etc. shh.)

But, I had to pay$130 unexpected dollars up front weeks before Christmas and house full of kids eating. I had to walk out and leave my computer in the hands of strangers.  I told the guy to not hack my Farmville. He assured me he wouldn’t and sort of smirked. Ok, so I don’t care about my Farm that much–I just thought it was witty. (My catering order at CafeWorld is in peril though.) I am carrying my phone around and checking my email obsessively hoping for a miracle fast fix.

I want Geek Squad Nanny Cam. I want more frequent updates. I want them to call and reassure me more than the one generic email. I want a number to call to check on my computer without being called a helicopter internet geek.

Now I am working between my netbook (tiny, tiny screen and supposed to be my sister’s Christmas gift) and the 12-year-old’s hand me down computer. (Slower than molasses and unwilling to load anything if it isn’t sketchfu or more than one thing at a time. )

Nothing is in the right place and I am all out of sorts.


  1. I think you should forget Zynga and start using Sketchfu. It would be an awesome community for you.

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