Against all reasonable expectations, yesterday ended on a positive note.
After getting caught in a cloud burst, dropping my wallet in the rain, having a new umbrella break and dealing with other annoyances which can drive a person completely batshit, I decided to install a computer printer.
I am electronically challenged. There. I said it. The printer in question was delivered in November, and until late yesterday afternoon it remained in the unopened shipping box. Sealed. Nothing was getting in or out. The box was in a conspicuous place in my apartment, so I could see it daily and feel weak. I lacked the courage to open it.
The middle of yesterday afternoon was when I experienced the moment of truth. After nearly breaking my neck in the rainstorm, I began thinking about confidential printouts which must be delivered to an agency later this month.
Ordinarily, if I need a printout I go to the Public Library or a Fed Ex Office Store. The documents I need to print this time are delicate, though. It’s best to pull them up on a home computer.
If possible, don’t begin a frustrating project when you’re already having a bad day.
After swearing my way through impossible instructions and jamming the machine with the first page I tried to print, I was ready to give up my independence and ask for help.
I dialed the tech support number and went through dozens of formalities. After noticing the little bit of sunlight we had that day was disappearing because night was falling, I heard the person on the other end of the line deliver the sad news that I didn’t qualify for tech support. His voice kept breaking up, so the details weren’t clear. Suffice it to say I was screwed.
The man I was speaking with may have heard a whimpering sound from my end of the line, or he may have just been nice. As a courtesy, he agreed to help me get the mangled paper out of the feeder.
My hero. He walked me through it, and it worked. Once again, the paper feeder on the machine I didn’t know how to use was clear. Bits of paper were all over the room, as a result of my emotional state while correcting the problem. It was okay, though.
I thanked him profusely, and after we hung up I returned to the business of being an independent woman who was determined to figure out what the fuck was going on.
Have you read Abel’s Island by William Steig? It was something like that.
To make a long story short (I know. Too late), I can print now.
A slightly different version of this post appears on a private social media page.