Wednesday, September 30, 2009


Another moment of the unexpected. The basement is still a long way from being completed so the dark barn wood walls; the orange plaid carpet ripped, worn, and wet; the single window well with the chipmunk stage show; and the insufficient lighting still persist. This is where Rick spends most of his day, probably not a good thing for someone trying to pull himself out of a three year depression. He set up his computer on a vintage desk we had rescued from one of the upstairs bedrooms. It’s one of those wooden desks from the fifties with a rolled front edge and pseudo inlay on the drawer fronts. This is where Rick was sitting trying to figure out his New York banking information with his online account up on the screen of his G3 24” iMac, the keyboard resting on his lap,  and a Citibank representative on his blackberry that he had cradled in the crook of his neck. Dealing with banks can be very frustrating and this conversation was not heading in the right direction. Just at the point where he thought he was making some headway the blackberry lost its signal and the landline rang. He went to grab the landline, forgetting the keyboard was still on his lap and to quote Emeril, “BAM!” The keyboard caught on his lap, the blackberry fell from its cradle followed by the computer crashing off the desk and making a direct hit on the edge of the chair on its deadly downward decent. When all was done the front pencil door of the desk was missing some of its inlay and the screen of the computer looked like a piece of shattered glass creatively portrayed with crazed lines and imaginary shards.
Rick’s ingenuity rose to the fore. The computer had not lost its ability to turn on. He figured out a way to create his own screen in a tiny corner of the original screen which when looked at with some magnifying assistance actually shows all of the necessary information. It’s a hardship for someone whose eyesight is diminishing but a plus when our pocketbook can’t take the hit of a new computer just right now.
Like our family, the fall didn’t kill the computer but it sure put a crimp in its effectiveness. On the other hand, necessity is the mother of invention and Rick has won a gold star in the book of "making do" for his ability to invent a set of crutches and bandaids to make that computer work.

In this day and age you can’t survive without a computer and an internet connection. If you’re starting over and don’ have basic computer skills but think you’re too old a dog to learn a new trick then think again. Without the ability to connect with the worldwide web you aren’t going to be starting over you’re going to be stuck in an old world watching the new one whiz by. Besides on the web nobody knows your age they only know what you want to show them and that should be your wisdom and your talent.

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