I have been using one of the school’s laptops off & on this year — it generally makes my life a lot easier and reduces the amount of time I was spending at the school building in the evenings. (At least I can sit on the couch and work instead of abandoning Coart for most of the evening.)
I should say I’ve been using several of the school’s laptops this year, because none of them has worked consistently. The first one (we’ll call it “NCS 5”) met its untimely death when the new battery melted into the motherboard (while the laptop was sitting in my livingroom overnight!).
The second was just an interim — “NCS 6” showed up at my door during one of the 8th graders’ newsletter work sessions. We had a short and noncommittal relationship.
In late December, I thought I’d finally found “the one” — “NCS 9.” Despite being plagued by the same irritating design flaws as all the HP laptops owned by the school (I swear I will *never* buy a PC laptop, and certainly not one made by HP/Compaq), Nine and I hit it off. I created my own user account. (Is that kinda like moving in? Or when the girl puts her shaving gel & deoderant in the guy’s bathroom?) I customized Outlook for my email account. I nabbed a cool picture from the scene performances as my desktop and installed all the quirky Firefox extensions to make my life simpler. It was a good Christmas, despite the fact that Nine ate my Italy photo CD (anybody know how to get a REALLY jammed CD-R out of a CD drive??)
This morning, Nine wrote me the PC equivalent of “F-off” and shattered our idyllic existence:
Apparently the power cord got dislodged this AM (it happens *all* the time — one of the design flaws I hate) and the laptop (on standby) ran the battery down to zero. When I booted the thing a few hours ago to start my day, Nine had no record whatsoever of my user account.
All my files. All my drafted emails. All my handy-dandy Firefox extensions. Gone.
The default saccharin XP desktop photo (green grass/blue sky) stared back at me from a computer with total amnesia. As far as it’s concerned, “Lori Ramey” had no effect on its life.
[insert stream of expletives]
I’m computer-savvy enough to locate my documents folder (buried in the system files) and transfer it to an iPod. But I have no idea why the user account just …. evaporated. And the problem seems to be recurrent — on the latest reboot, the computer didn’t even remember that a Lori Ramey user account ever existed. *shakes head* It’s like living a cyber-version of 50 First Dates.
Since it’s too early in the day to drown my woes in alcohol, I headed over to apple.com to fantasize about buying a MacBook Pro and ending my relationship with Windows for good. (Is it really adultery if you never loved him in the first place?) Alas, even my imaginative brain can’t justify the hefty price tag of an Apple laptop….