8. I’m technologically challenged.
I can do light bulbs and insert batteries – beyond that I flounder.
When my husband bought our first computer, I wouldn’t go near the thing. He was using one at his workplace so had some idea of how to proceed; our daughter likewise. For weeks they talked a funny language between them – and I wasn’t interested in learning it. I was never going to get involved with that whizbang. What if I pushed the wrong button and wiped out everything?
Then we took this interesting trip to the Family Reunion in Massachusetts; when we got home I wanted to tell my mother-in-law and some friends all about it. The prospect of writing all those long letters was quite daunting, so I finally faced the computer. I sat down, started a letter to Mom – and filled eight pages with many details of the trip. (That would have been a LOT of hand-writing.)
Since I wanted to get it in the mail, I pushed PRINT. Nothing happened. I checked the paper supply; no problem there. Pushed PRINT again. Still nothing.
Getting a little flustered, I very carefully and deliberately went to the PRINT command and pushed PRINT. Dead silence. I phoned our daughter and wailed. “I can’t get this thing to print up my letter to Grandma! What’s wrong?”
She thought a minute. “Is the printer turned on?”
“It needs to be turned on? I thought it was automatically on when the computer’s on.”
“No. There’s this little button on the side that you have to flick to turn it on.”
I checked. Sure enough; there was the button and it was OFF. So I turned it on.
My letter started printing out… and printing out…. Wait – just ONE copy! I snapped it off. Turned it on, hoping it had forgotten or reset itself somehow. It zipped out a third copy.
Three eight page letters all addressed “Dear Mom…”! When Bob got home we sat down and studied how to avoid a repeat.
But I was hooked. Once I discovered the delights of being able to edit freely, to cut & paste to make my writing flow along more smoothly, then save it all I wasn’t going back to handwritten letters generously splotched with Liquid Paper.
But I did have a little chuckle a few months later when Bob tried to install something and wiped out the command mode. At least that hadn’t happened to me.☺
Now here I am – blogging. Every step of the way from then until now has been with step-by-step hands-on guidance from someone(s) who is (are) technologically literate. I think in the school of computer science I’ve made it to Grade 4 or 5 by now. I’ve even figured out how to install a Header or change Themes. Who’d ’a thunk it?
Another technological challenge I’ve faced has been a serger or over-lock machine. I’ve sewed since Grade 8 Home-Ec Class – always cottons or double knits. The easy ‘70s stuff. Finally almost two years ago – after resisting the idea for two decades – I gave in and bought a serger so I could do a proper job with polyester fabrics.
This gizmo is like a sewing machine, but with 3-4 threads for overcasting fabric edges–which means 3 or 4 threading paths to figure out. Talk about high tech! I gritted my teeth and learned enough to do the basics, but when one of those thread breaks things get pretty tense around here. The whole thing has to be unthreaded and then rethreaded. But first I have to remember when I stashed the manual.
Now another challenge is before me. On August 25th I cancelled my contract with my web hosting company and shut down my website. Thus began a very complex procedure that is straining my technological limitations to the max.
They are set up to automatically renew your contract and debit your Visa. If you want to terminate your account and get a refund, it takes tech smarts I don’t seem to have. Yesterday I was trying to log in to this account and follow the instructions given to cancel my service from my own control panel – which they say I must do. And I can’t get into my control panel. It’s supposed to be a fairly simple process but none of my dealings involving this particular web host have proved simple. All I arrived at was a tension headache.
I’m sure there’s a spiritual lesson in here somewhere: an exercise for my patience, meekness, gentleness maybe? Maybe even my generosity, as I’m not sure yet if I’ll get my money back.
Maybe I should rather go dig in the garden; a spade is one technology I can handle.
Speaking of which, do check out Bill Jones’ blog about spiritual lessons he finds growing out in his yard. You’ll find his writings at http://iwasthinkingdotme.wordpress.com/