Necessity is a mother

duck tapedWriting with a pen on paper is perfectly fine, until you want to share what you’ve written with a group of a couple hundred people for whom you do not have mailing addresses. Or a copier to make 200 copies. Or postage stamps, for that matter. Weren’t stamps recently in the news? Something about the cost of a stamp going down? How much does a stamp cost these days, anyway?

Never mind. I digress. Sort of.

The point is this: I resorted to writing with pen on paper when my laptop melted down last week. Literally. The AC power connector—not the adapter, but the connector inside the machine—decided it was just too much work to maintain a firm connection to the adapter. Loose power connections are a bad thing. The friction created does things like overheat other things that function better when not overheated.

For the time being, though, I decided to muddle through. I have other circumstances these days requiring a stash of cash, so an expensive repair or new computer was not in the budget. I’d just have to make do. For weeks I’ve been doing all sorts of odd things to get the adapter to connect to the AC, like pulling the cord up and over the cover, and then duck taping the cord to the lid to maintain tension. Hey, it worked. Until it didn’t.

One minute you are sitting pleasantly on the couch, sipping a glass of wine, listening to music and writing a lovely little story, when suddenly, like being t-boned by a car you didn’t see run a red light, your world is in total chaos and you are reeling from the destruction all around you. As my laptop gave off this loud POP, I reflexively screamed and shoved the thing off my lap. The cover slammed down, pinching the adapter cord between the screen and the keyboard, internally smashing the LCD. The AC connection had finally fried, and in the process, I damaged the screen. It looks like someone threw a rock at it, but from the inside.

Sometime today Amazon’s stork will deliver a new bundle of joy, but in the meantime I’ve had to channel McGyver to figure out a way to jerry-rig my old machine and equipment together. I am writing this post using an ancient desktop PC, the size and weight of two cinder blocks (when I bought it all those years ago, I asked the man what the little rectangle “outlets”were for. “USB drives,” he said. “What are those?” I asked. Now you know how old the machine is!) It took the better part of 30 minutes to boot up and update the billion or so patches and such. Fortunately, I still had an old network cable lying around so I can get on the internet. I restarted it, and plugged in the external hard drive I use to back up my laptop to get at those files. Discovered the monitor is also toast, so figured out how to hook up my HDTV to it.

Necessity is truly the mother of invention.


5 thoughts on “Necessity is a mother

  1. We had a connector issue with a laptop once; the one I wrote my first novel on, actually. The temporary solution involved a safety pin and a stick pin. Not exactly safe. And my first kindle fire had a charging port problem. I wrapped the cord underneath and up and set the kindle on top until that stopped working. Amazon replaced it tho.

    My parents still have their ancient desktop; it can’t connect to our wifi, but my stepdad was a photographer and has dozens and dozens of CDs of photos that he still goes through on it.


    1. My father had a Brother Word Processor. We paid an outfit a lot of money to convert about 20 floppy disks only to end up with a lot of misc notes. But he loved that thing and used it to his dying day 5 years ago.

      Liked by 1 person

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