Technology and I did not get off on the right foot this morning. It started with my phone, which wouldn’t turn on. I tried the two things that always seem to correct technological problems — I tried turning it on and off, and I smacked it. Neither worked.
Let me back up and tell you the story of this phone. I got it for my birthday last year in December — well not this particular model, but one identical to it. While the rest of the world is obsessed with smart phones, I was set on getting another dumb phone. I feel like I’m not in one place long enough to sign a two-year contract on a smart phone, plus I already have an iPod touch, which is basically an iPhone without a $40/month data plan. So I found a dumb phone with a qwerty keyboard and my parents bought it for me for my birthday. It worked great for two days until my friend with an iPhone sent me a multimedia invitation to a New Year’s party and my dumb phone went into anaphylactic shock. The screen went blank and wouldn’t turn on. Then when I eventually did get it turn on, half the screen was frozen. So I took it to the AT&T store because the phone says “AT&T” on it. When I pulled it out the guy at the counter gave me a “Seriously? There are iPhones and Droids and 3D phones out now and you just bought that phone?” look. He basically told me the phone was crap and that’s why only stores like Newegg.com sell it. Newegg.com must have known it was crap because they would not give me a refund, they just told me to send the phone back and they would send another one. And they did, three days after I went back to London. So when I arrived in the US this time, my shiny new dumb phone was waiting for me. Like its predecessor, it worked fine for a few days, but then it decided to shut off. It wasn’t dead, it just felt like shutting off. And it’s been doing that at least once a day, every day since I got it. Usually I just pop the cover off, remove the battery, replace it, then slap it, and it works again, but my phone wasn’t having it this morning. It would not turn on. After multiple attempts to charge it and several angry slaps, I gave up and put my sim card in my trusty old Sony gsm phone, which isn’t as trusty as I thought because I didn’t receive any of Stephen’s texts. I just ordered a new battery for my dumb phone and hope that will solve the problem.
So I was already angry at technology when I plugged my iTouch into my new computer this morning. Yes… I said new computer. Remember “I am absolutely not buying anything else in the US?” I bought the new Macbook Air. My old Macbook Pro is three years old and I finally decided to take Stephen’s advice and try to sell it before it dies and ends up in the laptop graveyard in my parents’ basement. At least this way my old computer will pay for half of my new one. (Hopefully — I still need to wipe it and list it on Craigslist, which is a whole ‘nother project I’m not ready to attack.) While I was visiting my family last weekend my cousin told me he didn’t like Apple products. I converted to Mac three years ago and have been generally happy with it, but after this morning I know what he meant. “It’s always trying to sync or something,” he told me. So I plugged my iTouch in just to charge it, but iTunes didn’t like that. Alerts kept popping up — “Do you want to transfer photos from this computer to your iTouch?” it asked. “Do you want to update to the latest version of iTunes?” (My computer is brand new, why doesn’t it have the latest version of iTunes?!) “Do you want to update the software on your iPod?”
First I updated iTunes, which took a few minutes. Then I tried to update my iPod, but first it said I had to transfer my purchases. I always avoid synching with iTunes, as nothing good ever seems to come out of a synch. I remember Stephen’s boss’s wife asked us to help her synch her iPhone calendar with her computer. We ended up replacing her full iPhone calender with her empty computer calendar and we weren’t invited back to their house for a while (I kid… I think.) But I think that’s what my cousin was complaining about — why does it assume you want to replace your full calendar/iPod etc. with emptiness? I almost made that mistake with my iPod today. Finally I got my iPod updated and decided to exercise using a video on my computer. I opened the video, which I store as a .avi file, and QuickTime said it wouldn’t work. I had been using this video on my old Mac with no problem, but suddenly QuickTime doesn’t want to play .avi files? So I hit the Mac forums trying to solve my problem. An hour and three programs later, I was able to exercise, but I was already exhausted from technology. I was going to try to erase my old computer today, but I don’t think I can handle the technological stress.
Thanks a lot Steve Jobs, Tim Cook, or random workers at Foxconn (I’m not exactly sure who I should be angry at, but I feel like being mad at someone.)