Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Kids, Don't Try This at Home

by Lupe Fernandez

Our tale begins thus: I’m going to Mexico to research a memoir manuscript about my father. I bought a high definition video camera for my upcoming trip. The video camera works great. The editing software doesn’t. After uninstalling the video editing software, my pc no longer recognizes the disc drives. I consult the all-knowing internet and find instructions for editing a Registry file. The Registry file has nothing to do with registering gifts for weddings. After editing the Registry file to gain access to my disk drives, I discover my pc no longer recognizes my mouse and keyboard. No clicking. No typing. No writing.

Now I, Mr. Always on Time to My Critique Group Always Turns in Pages on Schedule, will not be able to prepare posts for scheduled publishing during the time I’m on vacation. I’m always early. I’m always on time. I have one work for this frustration: MALGURK! Obsessed with my inoperative computer, I can’t concentrate on writing on that low tech medium called paper.

What? Write long hand, with my sloppy cursive handwritten that rivals attorneys and doctors in its decipherability?

How I long for the clack of the keyboard, the stale scent of dust drawn by the monitor’s electrostatic charge, the smooth grip of the mouse, the chime sound of new e-mail.

I’m taking my pc to a computer shop this for repairs, and I promise on the life of my writing, I will never, I repeat, never edit the Registry file again, so long as I live.

I planned to post some thoughts about Art versus Commerce, but this diatribe about wetware (my brain) versus software (my computer) will have to suffice.

So kids, if you’ve learning anything from this technological tale of woe…

…don’t edit the Registry file. Don’t even think about it. Forget that I ever wrote about the Registry file. Strike the word from the mind. Clearing my mind….clearing my mind…clearing my mind….that !#!$#%& file.

How am I writing this post, you ask, if my computer is inoperable? I rely on the good graces of computer compatriots. In the future, I may use the public library computers, but I’ll be sure to wash my hands afterward. So many fingers. So many keys. Who knows where they’ve all been?


  1. My advice to you is to marry/pair-up with someone with an M.S. in Computer Science. It works for me. Sorry to hear about your misfortune.

  2. Thanks L.W.

    In the seventies, I read articles boasting that the computer was going to make our lives easier. Hah!

    Lupe F.

  3. How upsetting and frustrating! Awful to have something go cockeyed when it is used and relied upon so much.

    Is it corrected/operating now? If not, scream. If so, you actually may do it again because now you know how.

    Optimist's view of frustration and learning !! always,

  4. And I have a sore throat. Cough. Gasp. Cough.

    Lupe F.


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