Friday, February 05, 2010

Computer realities and sorrows

My beautiful iMac G-5 was sitting in its sculptural glory at the genius bar at the Apple store yesterday. I thought I was taking it for a tweak and would take it home good as new. I described its problem; probably minor, I thought. The tech opened it up, pointed to a couple of things that looked a bit like corroded batteries, and said once that happens the video won't work right anymore and it messes up other stuff, and the whole logic board would need to be replaced. He thought perhaps it wasn't worth doing. The hard drive, though, could be removed and the information would still be good.

I stood there thinking maybe he could say something different. I loved that computer! Yeah, I have a macbook. And I also have the smaller macbook I got when I dropped the other macbook. But they're not beautiful big pieces of engineering glory like that iMac. I should have had its portrait made. I should have had my portrait made with it!

So I said I felt awful about that, like I had taken my dog to the vet thinking he'd be fine and we'd go home together, and they'd put him to sleep. The nice young man who was helping me said he knew exactly how I felt. I expected him to tell me of a favorite computer he had had to let go, too. But no, he said he took his dog to the vet and they put him to sleep right that day.

I felt terrible.

He checked the repair price: $550. I said it was okay not to fix it, since I had another computer. It was basically the printer driver and my iTunes, plus all its still-intact files.

He advised me about buying an external enclosure. Sounds like an urn, to me, though an urn from which the deceased can communicate, with the proper connectors.

When he was with me at the checkout, where I was paying for an Airport Express so my printer can commune with other computers without the G5, I apologized about having brought up the memory of his dog. He said that's okay. It had been three years and he had another dog now. I asked if he had noticed, when he was checking my records, how long I had had that. He said the warranty had been up for four and a half years, so... and everyone in the vicinity muttered "five and a half years." Oh. It seemed like a practically-new computer to me. Because I'm old, I guess. And I said "That's pretty long, for a dog," and my tech guy smiled.

What I liked about it is silly. It had a lot of room right on the front for sticky notes. Not Macintosh electronic sticky notes (though it had those too), but real paper stickies. That was awesome. I had to take stickies off to take it in to the shop yesterday.

Holly was 14 and a half. 2006. The computer wasn't new. I guess it did last a while.

1 comment:

Sandra Dodd said...

I did make a repair up above (to the date, not the computer) after I got this note from Keith: "You might want to change this on your blog. I think you meant 2006." Yeah. I put 1996. For me, not so different. For Holly being 14 and a half, big difference.