Look in the mirror. Baby, you have a problem.
But now, your real problem is that now that you know you have a problem, it’d be wrong to not correct the problem because at least when you didn’t know, you were innocent by ignorance, but now? Now, you are accountable because you are guilty by acknowledgement. You have to be responsible for a solution to this problem that you now know you have. They say “knowing is half the battle,” but you wonder how you will ever win the war if the other half of the battle is stupidity.
So when you are faced with this problematic trilemma and must make a decision, do you 1) conveniently forget that you realized you had the problem in the first place and go back to eating an entire tray of nachos in blissful ignorant bliss, 2) lock yourself in a conference room with floor-to-ceiling whiteboards, dry erase markers and a set of pre-fabricated Harvey balls because your resume says you are a problem-solver, or 3) blog about “it” with ambiguous allusions and lots of rhetorical questions?
You don’t want to accept that it’s truly a problem, so you go back to thinking that you never had a problem in the first place. Let’s just call it a very long river in Egypt.
It was totally normal when I found myself talking about food and restaurants all the time. Lots of people are passionate about food, and it’s certainly not unexpected to rave on and on about a passion. It’s expected. Sure, there were some mornings when I woke up soaked with sweat, tangled in my sheets because I had just had a fantasy, er, dreamt about dinner with *ahem* someone, but that is natural. *blush* Natural. And naturally, it led to this blog.
I never considered it a problem when I was blogging about food all day. Every day. I would wake up extra early before work to publish a post. I would forgo lunch with co-workers to sneak in an hour of surfing other blogs. I would rush home and stay up until obscene hours in the morning uploading photos. But hey, when you have a hobby, you have a hobby, right? Right-o!
Then it occurred to me that maybe it might possibly be a problem when Blogger unexpectedly went down one night this past Spring. I tried to login to no avail. It went down, and I, well, to put it lightly, I spazzed. Sweating, I fiendishly hovered over my keyboard, my hand in a gargoyle curl snapping out in spasmodic reaches to click F5 every, oh, about 15 seconds. It kept taking me back to the Status page. I went from wildly crazy shrieking at about the evil overloard who goes by the unspeakable name “Blogger,” to quietly sitting in my chair staring at my computer like a serial killer. Blogger was down for something like 12 hours, but it felt like…three days. Withdrawal? Nah. Blogger’s back up! I feel at peace.
Then I realized that yes, this could go down the path of “problem” when, as I usually do post-posting, I went back and re-read the previous week’s posts and saw that I had blogged about a restaurant, didn’t have a photo, so I drew one. At the time, of course, it seemed totally normal to draw a picture of myself and a friend eating at Thai Bamboo. A few days later, I had to wonder about myself.
But it has taken until now to finally realize that yes, I have a problem.
I woke up Sunday morning – a Sunday morning not unike any other morning, bright outside, already unseasonably warm, a little sleepier than a Monday, but still, nothing unusual. I sat down at my desk. I leaned back in my chair to inhale and “take a moment” before attacking my day’s blogging like a pantheress about to tear into a fallen gazelle. With a graceful outstretch, I clicked the “On” button, then waited patiently. I love my baby, but it’s not as spry and quick to respond as it once was, four, five, was it six? Six years ago. It doesn't seem that long. Now, when I give it a little nudge in the morning, it grumbles, it groans, rolls over, but it finally beeps and flashes out of its slumber, ready for a pre-breakfast morning tumble.
That fateful morning, I watched as the screen blinked the usual startup sequence. It clicked. It whirred. Then it sighed. It sighed to that devastating shade of blue that even Crayola wouldn’t dare touch. Bluescreen.
From there, I can’t quite remember the sequence of events because it all happened so fast. The morning was a blur of three-finger salutes, several failed attempts at resuscitation, desperate phone calls to IT-ish friends, plugging, unplugging, un-installing and re-installing that seemed to make its condition progressively worse.
After several hours, I had to give up.
My once-trusty, six-year-old computer had blued out. Not blacked out. It blued out. It was broken. Completely, totally, utterly, devastatingly, heart-breakingly broken. Shredded into bits and bytes that I couldn’t for the life of me piece back together. I wanted to scream, cry, tear my hair out at the black and blue mess of a screen that was staring back at me without even blinking. Cold.
And all the while, another slightly more fragile thing was still breaking, making the whole ordeal a brutally emotional mess.
When The Internets are your living, watching your computer die and reacting as I did is normal. In that moment of *crash*, your whole hard drive flashes before your eyes. Then, in the aftermath, realization washes over you that it’s gone and you experience all kinds of emotions. Disbelief. Anger. Confusion. Despair. Some people call them stages, as if they occur in order, but its really all chaos. But no matter what, Acceptance comes last. After you accept it, you stand up, wash your face of yesterday’s mascara, and figure out what to do next.
And it is in this “What to do next” that I realized I have a problem. I was without computer. I was without access to The Internets. Clearly, I would have to move on, and I know that my dearly departed IBM Thinkpad would have it no other way but to have me find something else. Better. Faster. Newer. But it would take time. A new computer is a major purchase, and for unemployed little moi, it’s an even major-er purchase. I would nee
d at least a day to research.
I was without a computer for two days, and…and I. Was. A. Wreck.
After that Sunday afternoon of being without a computer, I was starting to feel weird. Disconnected. Slightly unbalanced. It wasn’t good. I fretted, then forced myself to go to bed early that Sunday night so I wouldn’t be awake to feel the sting of being computer-less. I woke up Monday morning. I was confused. My usual routine was disrupted. My laptop lay in a cold, closed heap, pushed away from the edge of the table where it usually sits. In desperation, I begged to use a computer that Monday morning. Any computer. Won’t you be at work all day today? Can I borrow your computer for the eight hours while you’re at work?
I spent Monday on a borrowed Mac, and it was horrible. I hate Macs.
The next day, my sister called me and I cried my eyes out to her, sort of hoping…"Do you want to come over and borrow my computer?” she asked. I thought she’d never ask. “Are you serious? Um, well…” She insisted. “Okay!” I already had my shoes on.
But still, it is very diffcult to use someone else’s computer. It just doesn’t feel right. I can’t reach Enter. I hit Del and it takes me Home. Annoying. It’s especially difficult to blog when all your photos and files are on the hard drive of the computer that just crashed and burned.
I barely made it through two days of being computer-less. I more than fretted. It was uglier than Blogger being down for 12 hours. And I knew I had a problem.
But…I bought a laptop (Moo!). And I went right back to where I left off. Relapse is such a beautiful thing.
When a computer breaks, you *choke* at how much Microsoft Office costs when it just doesn’t come pre-installed on a company-issued laptop, but you buy a new computer, bells, whistles, anti-virus, and all.
When an egg breaks, you make a rich man’s version of the poor man’s version of eggs Benedict. Egg McSarah.
When a heart breaks…wash that Egg McSarah down with a Bloody Mary. ;)
Homemade Egg McMuffin aka Egg McSarah
I hate myself for posting a recipe for this because I have always found “recipes” for sandwiches as odd. Bread. Fillings. Du-uuuh. Serves two. One if you’re heart-broken.
However, I will go on to say that I used a sourdough English muffin, toasted it hard, and instead of Canadian bacon or ham, I used turkey breast. Something about turkey makes your brain smile. Serotonin. Sarah-tonin. You know, kinda like a Turkey Benedict.
Also, I fried my egg in a small omelet pan, but if you want to get all crazy and make your egg a perfect disc the way that it look at McClownburger's, I recently read a recipe that reccommends you oil a small ramekin, crack an egg into it, then either bake it in a 350 oven until set, or microwave it for 2 minutes, rotating the ramekin avery 15 seconds. Microwave? You know what you should do, Grasshopper.
** a year ago today, we were in high gear for the w (not the hotel) with a chain of chains **