Monday, October 17, 2011

I'm getting a new computer so I cleaned out the garage


Trust me, I can explain. . . .

Bear with me; I’ll get to that logic in a minute. But first, the new computer . . . I’m really excited about it, don’t get me wrong, but it strikes me that it’s almost as bad and as good as if I were moving, or maybe I should say as dislocating and cleansing as only a full-house move can be. There are so many files, music and pictures, and lists of favorite locations stored on my old computer. All this “virtual” stuff, collected through the years like junk in a drawer, and now I have to go through it and decide what to keep. I mean if I really want to be organized about it and I would like to be.

Two Men and a Truck?!

So I have to look at each file, photo, and location, etc., and determine whether it’s worthy of being moved. And it’s not as if I can get the whole box thing going either. That system HGTV recommends where you label three cartons, Keep, Toss and Give Away, and divide items accordingly. What’s on my computer doesn’t even have any weight. It’s not as if I have to hire Two Men and a Truck to transport it and yet it’s still a painstaking chore. I’m nervous, too. This isn’t just any move. I’m making the switch from an IBM compatible PC to an Mac. There’s going to be a real learning curve, the same as if I were relocating to another town, where I have to learn a new route to the grocery store and how to find the post office and the bank. I know I’ll get lost a few times before I figure it out. Mostly, though, I’m relieved. The machine I have is seven years old and so is the software. It’s slow and cranky. It has these little maddening idiosyncrasies and there’s no way around them. We’ve rubbed along together well enough, but it’s time for something new. Time to come into the twenty-first century, so to speak.

One man’s treasure

So what’s cleaning out the garage got to do with it? I had two reasons for doing that, one’s pretty silly. I had this idea that I’d set up the old computer on my work table. That way if I got into trouble on the new machine, I could just run out to the garage and fire up the old one. Idiosyncrasies aside, I know how to work the old machine. Of course, it didn’t occur to me until after I’d cleared space on and around the table that was strewn with a number of half-finished projects that the old machine is so old it doesn’t have a way to go wireless and the hoops I’d have to jump through to get it up to speed just aren’t worth it. The second reason I cleared space for it, though, has to do with its ultimate disposal. I mean it just seems wrong to toss it into the trash and it’s not environmentally responsible anyway, if you can keep from it. So my son David has a friend who does tramp art. He lusts after all things machine, metal and electronic. Dinged, battered, not working, it’s his treasure. Some of his art is displayed roadside on occasion, huge pieces. Imagine driving along and there is your monitor posing as some robot’s head atop your computer case or whatever. Maybe there’s a recycled metal cylinder arm and hand upraised in a big-Texas salute, and looped around the wrist joint there’s a cable with your mouse dangling like a charm. I like the idea of that. My old electronic junk repurposed. I like that something that in its time provided me with many hours of service will now give an artist means to create something whacky and unique that makes people smile. My new computer arrives on Wednesday and I’ll be dismantling this one then and taking it out to the worktable in the garage where it will stay until David can pick it up and transport it to its new life as art.

Note: If this post looks odd, it's because I can't get Wordpress to format properly! And if the website looks in disarray, it’s because it’s undergoing a little growth and renovation to accommodate my latest novel. The Volunteer will be available for downloading later on today, October 17. It is the story of psychologist Sophia Wilmot who through a haunting sequence of events finds herself reluctantly holding the power to save death row inmate Jarrett Capshaw from execution, but when details of an old crime from her past resurface, she discovers it’s not only Jarrett’s life that is at stake, but her own. I’ll post again as soon as the book goes live and maybe by then, I'll have these formatting bugs sorted out!

1 comment:

  1. Hurray for change!!! It dislodges the junk we don't need!!! j.