Wednesday, 9 January 2008

Bad Luck 3

I began by setting the laptop up, carefully arranging the lighting just right so I cut out the reflections, and turning off my digital camera’s flash. Only then did I begin taking picture after picture of ‘the cracks’ in laptop’s screen, just to be sure that I’d got a good shot of the damage. I then shut down my laptop, put it carefully back in its protective case, and carried it to the other side of the room where it would be safe. Then I’m back to my desktop PC, power it on, log in, wait an eternity for my virus protection to load, and then finally boot up my image editing software. It was finally time to find a perfect picture of the cracks, post it here and write a few words before I crawl thankfully to bed with a handful of the red pills Dr. Raj prescribed for Judy’s hot flushes.

Only, when I opened the camera, I realised that there was no memory in it…

It was so typical of my day.

I start again. Fifteen minutes later we have our grainy result. And it’s a beaut, isn’t it? It doesn’t do justice to the size and vibrancy of the cracks. These are cracks designed by Faberge and made by Swarovski.

There’s a moral in this: what you reap, you eventually sow. About a year ago, I reaped myself a new laptop. I’ve always used Sony laptops. It’s not just a style thing. In fact, it’s never really has been a style thing. It’s been about having a good working environment. I’m big into getting the perfect set up. I have to use my favourite word processor (Atlantis Word – small, quick to load, almost crash proof), with a dark background and bright text to make it easier on the eyes to write for long periods. My previous laptop was extremely small, with a ten inch screen and a titanium shell. It lasted me for about five years of travelling around and throwing it carelessly in my bag. I must have written a good few million words on it. Eventually, a copy of Sir Walter Scott’s poetry fell on it from about twelve feet and the hard disk developed a high pitched whine. It drove me crazy when I tried to write with it so I attempted to change the hard disk. The laptop died in the operation.

Last year, I bought its replacement. I should have spent more money.

I’d intended on buying an exact replacement for my previous machine; something I could lug around the house, into coffee shops, parks, and libraries, and always be able to write. Trouble was: the smaller the laptop, the more you pay for the laptop.

Sony have a TZ range of ultra portable laptops. A man could die of dehydration just drooling over them. I know I did last year when it came to choosing a new machine. Only the ultra portable laptops with either the titanium or carbon fibre shells were nearly two thousand pounds. Judy told me to damn the expense and get myself one. But that’s nearly Mac PowerBook territory. Of course, I’d never buy a PowerBook after having bad experiences buying countless replacement power supplies for a machine that had a habit of burning off your knees (yet falling outside their battery replacement scheme). Still, it was more than I could afford, even with the money from Channel 4.

So, strapped for cash but needing something to write on, I settled on not-quite-dirt-cheap model with a fifteen inch screen and a plastic case. One year and half a million words later and this is the result. Something has pushed against the flimsy plastic lid and caused the ‘cracks’ to develop inside the screen. It works but it’s hardly work friendly.

Some days I wonder why I write this blog. The main answer is usually to make myself laugh and in the process hope to make you smile. I’ve failed today, unless you’ve got one of those healthily warped black humours and find calamity funny (I have and I do, despite tonight’s tears). Less edifying is to see fate again conspiring against me and I’m reminded that the answer to all my problems begins with a ‘j’, ends in a ‘b’, and has a crudely formed ‘o’ in the middle.

So please: go vote in my poll. I might not stand by the result but it might help me choose one among equal evils.

Me. I’m going to bed. I’ve had enough of today. I only wait to see what tortures lie in store for me tomorrow. I do know that Judy mentioned something about Cilla coming around.


AxmxZ said...

Get a Dell. They're pretty cheap and quite durable. My Inspiron 700m has lasted four years now - the batteries don't hold the charge like they used to, but other than that, it's top notch. I'll be buying a new one soon.

Hey... dude. I'll be buying a new one soon. Want this one? E-mail me! said...

The future's white; the future is MacBook Pro shaped...

Lola said...

I can only sympathise with your day. Sounds crap. But don't forget that we few, we happy few, we band of brothers are still reading and 'enjoying' your blog. Once more unto the breach, dear friend, once more! Or close the blog up with our English dead. I seem to have gone all Henry. Stephen would be proud (or would he? perhaps you know).

Above all, do what makes you happy!

Anonymous said...

You can now get a cheap lap top for about £210 - with a tiney screen of course. I did laugh at your post though - oh does this mean I have a nasty sense of humour?

bertas said...

Oh Lord I would love a brand new spanking laptop... I dont know why I didnt get it to begin with, but blond will always be a blond :)
I agree with Lola, we are all still here and reading...
I do hope today is better then yesterday :)

Richard Madeley said...

Ax, that's so kind of you. It's generous acts like this that make be believe in people. Of course, I couldn't and wouldn't accept. One good thing to emerge from this morning is that I've discovered that the laptop might be covered by insurance I paid for. I've got to ring people now to see if they're repair/replace it.

LMRT, no way. I really have had bad dealings with Apple. My previous PowerBook (an exensive one) burns my knees and Apple won't acknowledge a problem with the power connector, despite thousands of people complaining about it on the web. I'd rather stick with a quality PC laptop.

Lola, I'm going to write something right now. That will make me happy. Thanks for the kind words. I'm now smiling on a grey Thursday lunchtime.

Mutley, that might be true but what would I get for my money? It's okay to laugh. I was laughing too, through the tears. When things get so bad, they do actually become funny. I was just waiting for the next thing to happen, then the next...

Bertas, the news that the laptop might be insured has cheered me up a bit. I better get ringing them so somebody can come and collect it. It I can get a replacement, that would actually make it all a good thing, I suppose. Just wish I could get my money back on it.

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