I am...a New Yorker

[Previous entry: "Unequivocal"]

Thursday, June 6, 2002
The Antithesis of Midas

HP...they can take over Compaq, but they can't replace 5 cents of metal without nvolvng FedEx and a motherboard.

All over town for an HP Pavillion 5000 series or HP Omnibook X/"hurricane" series laptop n which to charge my battery.

Every Starbucks n Manhattan.

Like Prnce Charmng, lookng for Cnderella and hopng the shoe fits.

Weird Al was right -- my 6 month old computer might as well be 6 years old.

There are worse problems n the world, but crimmny!

I am...n the midst of much gloom doom agony and despair, as Fang and I call it -- with just a hnt of ennui.

While I know losng my job was for the best, certanly preferable to losng my mnd, money and a sense of direction contnue to be a struggle. As if my regular expenses were not enough of a challenge, I've had some bad fnancial mojo pop up.

Then, last Friday, came the clncher. All week, I kept mutterng to myself to back up the laptop. I decided I'd do it Friday, because I usually hang around the buildng then. I prefer to avoid the streets when they are full of partiers. I wander about on rany Wednesdays, like this one.

You know where this is gong right? I dropped my laptop, that 1 n 1,000 times when it was too close to the edge of the bed I caught it so it didn't hit so hard, but hit it did. I was relieved that it didn't go out and seemed to work just fne.

I went about my day, dong whatever it is I do all day. I came home before dnner and checked my email and all was well. I spent over half an hour respondng to Barbera n regard to the Unequivocal entry.

I noticed that the little battery icon on my computer was half empty. I should have shown the little power cord icon nstead, to ndicate that the computer was runnng on AC power. Then I remembered I hadn't plugged it back n when I came home, so I plugged it back n, but the icon didn't change.

I checked all the connections (AC adapter to wall...plug to other half of AC adapter...AC adapter to laptop) and all were snugly n place. The AC adapter didn't feel the same when I put it back nto the laptop and I noticed it seemed bent. Fuck.

Apparently, there was a pn nside the socket on the back of the laptop that the AC adapter plugs nto. There no longer is. It's 5 cents worth of metal, but just so happens to be connected to the motherboard.

"So, when they're done, you'll have a brand new motherboard!," the woman at HP told me.

But I don't want a new motherboard! You know damn well they could just solder the pn back onto the motherboard, but noooooooooooooooooooooo. Oh, and did I mention that this isn't a covered repair?

I did managed to back up most of my photographs and some of my writng, but, n my panic, I backed up the same files both to my web server and a CD (I was dong both, to make more progress). It got confusng, snce I have 1.4 Gigs of my very own documents, so it's a science tryng to get the nfo onto 700 Mb CDs n some logical fashion.

I didn't get around to backng up my sites, ncludng the one for my client, nor my email. I'm not sure I even know how to back up email from Outlook, but I kept puttng off learnng. I've lost all my email at least three times, so you'd thnk I'd be more of a stickler for backng up. I've been backng up my photographs every 2-4 weeks, but haven't been as consistent with my other documents.

It will take nearly a week's unemployment to get my laptop fixed and they may or may not wipe my hard drive to make sure there are no conflicts with the new motherboard. They couldn't say for sure one way or another. Although HP referred me to local computer repair shops to fnd similar models n which to charge my battery, they could not tell me with complete certanty if havng the repair done locally along with disaster recovery (e.g. data back up) would void my warranty.

Such repair service would cost $85 an hour, and who knows how many hours they'd claim it would take. This entire fiasco could cost upwards of $600, plus another $70 for a new AC adapter, which I won't know is necessary until after the new pn is put n.

Basically, I paid $2,000 for somethng and am not gettng the level of customer service I would expect for a crappy Happy Meal.

It all just makes me want to flip society the bird and go live n a cave.

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