Sunday, April 7, 2013

On the other hand. . . .

Keep it Light

       Generally speaking - the genesis of that qualification, bye the bye, simply bears witness to the fact that eighty per cent of what I write is written because I am genuinely moved to communicate what I feel are significant ruminations/observations.  The remaining twenty per cent has been urged upon me as material/information that someone else wishes to 'get out there' and would but for lack of a forum - I write from emotion and intuition.
       I've never been one to concern myself with the trappings of accuracy or the drudgery of plodding through authoritative tomes in the pursuit of factual data that might lend  some weight or significance even to my Scribner ship.  (That's kind of like a raft but powered by ink instead of toxic/combustible liquids.)
       This actually makes sense (another of my 'non-concerns')because I rarely read anything in its entirety unless it touches a nerve, causes an irrepressible commitment to continue.  (I think how fortunate this was for my children that I wasn't thusly "grabbed" by, say Exodus, when there were three tykes, a dog and a husband relying solely on my efforts for food and clean clothing.)
       This is one of the reasons I've distanced myself from several writing groups given to hosting conventions/workshops dedicated to the craft of 'writing', usually featuring known/successful authors who address us 'would-bes' pleasantly but tutorially nevertheless,  frequently with a soupcon of smugness and always with a semi sagging from the girth of their latest opus prepped for display and that personal note to the drooling purchaser; signed by the accomplished hawker.
       I prefer working in obscurity and, I daresay I've fixed the place up and festooned it with 'favorite things' such that I'll remain here - untarnished by commercial success and soaking in a bath of unconventional lack of sagacity for as long as I remain among the 'quick'.
       However, this being a twenty per cent day, I fear I must subject you to yet another discomfiting run-in with my bête noir - technology.  The matter became a twenty per center when both my best friend and my husband were skewered by the beast on the same day last week.  Moreover, they each looked to me for an explanation.  I suppose to some extent that made this exercise at least a twenty-one per center.
       My husband went to check his email (a Hotmail address) and was greeted by a screen titled, "Goodbye Hotmail; Hello Outlook".  My best friend (in Connecticut) with an Optonline address sounded borderline  psychotic as she announced the 'loss' of ALL email addresses and that she could not access my blog.  (That issue resolved itself - unfortunately - as she was using the wrong URL.)
       After an hour or so of tinkering on the keys, I threw my hands up re: Hotmail.  It had - as they have come to annoyingly say, "gone missing".  As he is a doc who works with attorneys that pass along highly confidential information in their attachments, I could hear rumblings of a major storm, the dark clouds of breach whipping up a torrential DRAFT which in its final form would have the title "Complaint".
       I offered to write a post so my friend could test accessibility and suffered through several hours of lost paragraphs, wrong photos and a compilation of words - sans beginning, middle or end which I titled "Confusion" but NEVER PUBLISHED.  Imagine my surprise when the abort-o-piece appeared as a post.
       (This entire fiasco infuriates me.  Were I to have the freedom to write about some really interesting things that have "gone missing" around here, you'd have some riveting reading today.)
       After absolutely NOTHING was said or done, my husband calmly announced that his email was back.  He didn't even inquire of the masterminds at Outlook what had caused the lapse.  (There's a guy who will NEVER get ulcers.  He's just a carrier.)  I didn't dare contact my friend, such was my embarrassment at the tripe she'd had to endure when using the correct URL.
       (Six years ago, shortly after we moved here, we saw signs on all manner of trees/posts seeking ANY information about a 'chocolate lab' that had "gone missing".  The owners, heartbroken, had to leave on their long-planned cross-country Summer vacation, never seeing the lab again.  While biking in the Dakotas, however, they received an email that the little pug, that used to swim across a patch of bay to visit the lab, had ALSO "gone missing".  THAT family got a new pug immediately.)
       Technology be dammed, I spent my week re-finishing furniture.  It relaxes me and keeps me from breaking expensive, aggravating equipment.  In fact, today was the first time since the 'lost email' episode that I took a break from painting and returned to the computer.  I've been amusing myself responding to ninety-nine Facebook notifications.  AND I promised my friend I'd work on getting the blog to behave.
       (Vacation over, the despondent lab less neighbors were training/spoiling their new dachshund puppy.  Lappy gained so much weight, his owner was walking him in a stroller!  Finally, she decided to get another pup just to get Lappy moving.
       One day, upon returning home from a puppy search, she didn't hear the now familiar crying of lonely/hungry Lappy.  A neighbor suggested she check the house next door.  And, boldly, she did.  As she neared the door, she could hear Lappy whimpering.  She banged on the door and the owner, with cowering Lappy at his feet, handed the dog over but not before telling her, "The next time you find him - if he's missing - you'll find him here with a bullet between his eyes, VERY quiet.")
       As much as I've come to rely on my computer, it has been something of a chore to keep up with its use.  The children gave me a Surface for Christmas and just as I was BEGINNING to learn its nuances, I managed to get my cell phone wet during one of my mandatory 3-walks-a-day, so I got a new Windows phone free.  Oye! It - the Windows cell phone - is 'sync-ed' with the Surface (the manufacturer suggested that the same user name be employed) and they are both VERY chummy with "Sky Drive", a new friend I didn't even know I had.
       Sky Drive is like a giant "Jack Rabbit" storage warehouse.  Apparently, one's material - documents, photos and something called "Public" - tagged with one's user name, is kept in "The Cloud" - the eponymous nickname which has been bestowed on Sky Drive, the infinite keeper-of-things-technologically/photographically and in other mysterious ways generated.  I can access things I've already forgotten and intentionally chose never to revisit.
       Taking pictures of the grand peeps, I (jokingly) said, "You're all going to the "Cloud" - on three.  Can you feel it?"  And, by gosh, the following day, with some time for editing, I downloaded the pictures. Guess where they were?  Yup.  "The Cloud" had my family.  If, by ANY chance, you read of an unknown would-be author 'gone missing', do call the 'tip line' and casually mention (YOU KNOW).  Gotta run.  BY now, Niemans MUST have a coordinated "Wing Line", yes?
Later, Lorane. . . .

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