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Don’t Touch the Computer!

     My birthday started with a delightful breakfast with friends. Too bad it didn’t end that way.

     I should’ve known better than to touch the computer. I was just going to quick see if I could get my printer to print without me. I mean, without me having to plug it into the computer.

     I have this Wi-fi that’s great. I can tell the computer to print a bunch of things from the Internet or Word or whatever and it remembers! But I have to pick up the computer and carry it over to the other room where the printer is, plug the printer cable into the computer and voila! Everything prints out, just as ordered.

     But no, that wasn’t good enough for me. I know people whose pages print out without being plugged in. All they have to do is walk over and pick up the pages off the printer. Don’t even have to carry the computer with them. I was jealous.

     So, having enjoyed a pleasant breakfast with friends, I felt quite – um, I was going to say “brave,” but it was more like “filled with confidence.” What is it they say? Pride goeth before a crash? Don’t know if anyone says it any more, but they used to. I think it was “before a fall,” but they didn’t know the power of computers back then.

     Feeling confident and quite technically advanced, I got out the literature on the router I bought a couple of years ago and sure enough, it said I could hook up the printer to the Wi-fi. Since the printer obviously wasn’t hooked up now, I smartly decided to re-install the router – with the printer included this time.

     It was my birthday. What could go wrong?

     It did. The Internet disappeared from my life. The re-install went south when it asked for information I didn’t have and I clicked “next” anyway. Bad mistake. Plus I forgot to unplug the router before I started the install so when I got to the part that said to unplug the modem, wait two minutes, and then plug in the router – it was already plugged in!

     I bravely ventured on, but of course the computer knew better and quit. And so I lost my Internet connections and had to call Cox Cable and obediently do everything the computer voice on the other end told me to do until she triumphantly shouted, “Your Internet is restored!” and then informed me that it was my router that was the problem.

     I knew that. She couldn’t fix routers. I shut down the computer and went outside to enjoy the rest of my birthday.

     You’re not gonna believe, I had the - not gonna say it - to go out and get a Blackberry two hours later. Well, Verizon sent a letter telling me they’d give me a free one and I’d been wanting one for a month or two and it was my birthday, so why not?

     I spent most of the afternoon talking to my Blackberry – not the free one. They had a better one for only fifty dollars more, plus the thirty-five dollars sales tax on what the Blackberry would’ve cost me if I’d paid the full price of five hundred thirty dollars. They get you every time!

     My Blackberry’s connected to the Internet, but my computer’s unplugged and has just recovered from a serious crash, according to Microsoft; my router is unplugged but if I need to go to the Internet I can plug it into my computer. One of these days I’ll re-install the router, before which, I will – I will! – unplug the router and have all of the required numbers in front of me.

     This afternoon I learned how I could have gotten my printer to print “remotely.” All I had to do was plug it into the router.

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