The Blue Screen of Death

Windows NT crashed
The Blue Screen of Death
No one hears your screams
My old Pc is past its prime, to put it mildly. I have gotten used to the missing plastic left hand corner of the case, and the long crack on the same side looks  like it’s always been there. But now the functionality is acting up. The keys on the keyboard are tilting this way and that, and only if in a very good mood do what they are supposed to do. The space key is particularly obstinate, as are many of the letters, leaving me in a state of despair, and the text almost unintelligible. As if that weren’t enough, the screen has started showing signs of old age, with strange, fine lines and non figurative artwork obscuring what lies behind.
So this afternoon I found myself in one of the town’s biggest pc-stores. For the first time on my own on such an occasion. I had equipped myself with some advice from people with insight on the matter, and a list of my own prerequisites, but other than that I came empty handed/headed…
I was hoping to meet a kind, helpful and knowledgeable salesman, that could guide me through the pc jungle, and met… Christopher. Christopher was all that I could hope for, and more. When I told him my errand, acquiring a pc, he looked a little weary, but upon realizing I actually had a list of things I was looking for in the machine, I saw life reenter his eyes. He started making a list of options, while telling me that since I was a woman, design would obviously be an issue, so he would…I stopped him short, and told him that estetics was at the bottom of my list, but that I would appreciate if he took me through the technicalities of different machines and explaining to me what bearing they had on my needs.
Where before his expression had grown into a rather happy one, he now looked ecstatic. As if he were electrically charged, he took off like a machine spewing tennisballs, throwing facts and figures at me almost at the speed of light. Number of cores, speed of same, capacity of memory, speed of same, hard disc capacity, core i3/5/7 contra something I don’t even remember, but should stay way clear of,  RAM, MB, GB, USB 2, 3, …, dedicated video memory, not to mention integrated subwoofer and HSDPA! He was so enthusiastic it was a sight to behold. Some of the terms were actually familiar, but many only vaguely so, and even more share gibberish to me. So I stopped him whenever I didn’t have a clue what he was talking about, and the guy actually went out of his way to try to make things a little clearer for me.
Eventually we had narrowed the choice down to two little beauties, of which one definitely was my favourite. I had him print out the specifications for me, which he did, signing with his name, if ever I needed to enquire about something. Only a predetermined decision not to make any purchase today, kept me from sealing a deal there and then. What convinced me even further that I had come to the right place, was the fact that he told me how they could set up the machine for me, provide expert assistance at all times, telephonic, online, personal. He even pointed out the man in the red t-shirt by the door, whose only job was to sit there, waiting for me to call or come by.
Almost too good to be true, I told myself, walking to my car in high spirits. Coming home I went through the information Christopher, my now good friend, had given me, looking things up on the internet, and of course realized that there were questions I either had not remembered to ask, or answers I had not fully understood. So, what the heck, I thought, I’ll just call Christopher or the guy in the red t-shirt sitting by the door. I looked at the papers he’d given me and found…no telephone number. I looked up the company on the internet and found… no phone number! No wonder the nice man in the red t-shirt had been looking so relaxed, no wonder Christopher could make such generous promises, almost making me believe he would move in with me to always be at hand.
I am still a far cry from buying a new pc, but I do know more about what I am looking for, I have realized that I am still not proficient or detached enough to see through enthusiastic and overly friendly sales persons, and I will ask for the phone number of both “Christopher” and knights in red t-shirts before making any purchase.
Below is a link to make me and hopefully many of you, stay sane, in the world of computers.
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