Thursday, July 1, 2010

Learned Helplessness

Weekend Assignment #323: Tech Savvy

When you bring home some new piece of technology, do you usually get it up and running with pleasant anticipation and calm confidence, or is there more likely to be much swearing, wailing and gnashing of teeth? What's the most trouble you've had with a new computer, tv, phone or related tech gadget?

Extra Credit: Who do you call in to help, if you get stuck?

Oh, thank you, thank you, for giving me the opportunity to tell a story that no one I know in real life wants to hear again!

When I was 24 years old, I put together my first “entertainment system”. A stereo receiver hooked up to a TV, VCR, CD player and speakers. I don’t think I even had a DVD player yet, and I certainly did not have cable. I put it all together myself and it all worked. That weekend, my brother, then age 20, came over. I dragged him to the room to brag. Not about the stuff, mind you. But the fact that I did my homework, made good consumer decisions, and put it all together by myself.

He took one look and said, “This is all wrong,” and started pulling out cables.

“But,” I whined. “There’s a picture. On the screen. And it makes noise!”

He claimed that was a coincidence. My connections were incorrect and I should go to the kitchen and make him a sandwich.

He didn’t actually demand a sandwich. But he crushed my little soul.

Since then, I have called him every time I am going to buy anything that has an on/off switch. When I went back to school, I dragged him to Best Buy to find me a laptop. And I wandered around the store saying, “But Scott! This red one is so pretty!” And, “That’s too cheap. It can’t be any good. How about this one!?” Then a year later, when the hard drive crashed, I made him spend an hour on the phone with Toshiba, figuring out the warranty. When he determined it would be at least a week before it got fixed, I dragged him back to Best Buy so I could buy a new one.  You know, for him to install right away.

This will continue until one of us dies.

(heh heh.)


Austin In SF said...

This made me LOL. Thank you!


Anonymous said...

Made me laugh, too.

Sandrine said...

Serves him right for criticising your first attempt!

undiscoveredauthor said...

Got to Agree with Sandrine. Them's the breaks, as they say... or perhaps you reap what you sow.

Karen Funk Blocher said...

My question is, did his "correct" setup work any better than your "all wrong" one?