Can’t Leave Well Enough Alone

It’s been one of those jumpy weeks, where the monkeys of techno-mania have been distracting me from the catching the big fish deep in the river of my dreams.

I want all of my equipment to work at its fnest, all the time, even if I’m not using it. And if I’m not using it, why not? Does it just think it can sit there taking up space without earning its keep?

Earlier this week I packed Jim’s trunk with two vintage printers, an ancient scanner, a broken TV and a zip drive that had been lolling around the garage far too long. Off he went with them to Goodwill.

I got a new printer (HP) because the “free” all-in-one I got from Dell never had very good quality and the ink cartridges are annoyingly expensive. Naturally I wanted the new printer to be wireless “because I can.” That was issue enough, except that it completely blew away my nice little set-up where I had all my computers speaking to one another politely and without a hassle. Now it’s totally FUBAR.

Then there’s our TV. We don’t have a fancy flat panel, but we do have the last of the good Sony analogs. It actually displays HDTV and I happened to have the right composite cable (rescued at the last minute from the broken TV going to Goodwill). Connected! (Not that there is a damn thing worth watchin on high-definition channels — too bad we’re not sports fans.)

We do get Netflix movies by mail — but “for just a few dollars” we could hook a little Roku box up to our TV and download additional movies free of charge. I figured that out. And figured out what an HDMI cable is in the process. It works fine. Pretty cool. But one more device to discombobulate my wireless network.

Oh, I could go on and on about my moody electronics — their little fits of pique, who’s not talking to whom…

But for a moment this afternoon, I turned everything off to have Roadrunner refresh the internet connection. I suddenly felt helpless… all my work requires– oh, damn, I thought, I might have to pull out the vacuum cleaner to stay connected to the grid. But don’t worry — I hit thecomputer ON button and all my monkeys came swooping back to life.

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