Saturday, March 30, 2013
NEW LAPTOP TOUCH SCREEN MEETS ATROPHIED LEFT BRAIN
A new laptop has attached itself to my consciousness. It has an awful lot of aspects invisible to me that will always be invisible to me. Most of them. I'm looking at a diamond and seeing only maybe three facets. But they're the only ones I use, need, want. First time Tim the Techman worked on my computer, he asked what I used it for. I said, A glorified typewriter. And that's it. I like to look at utube and facebook, which has changed radically and continues to change to the same degree. I like the new facebook. In the earlier one, pre-twitter, people wrote chatty quips like on twitter now. It was different, but it had it's own chatty style. Now facebook is a half dozen "memes" (cartoons with photo for the picture) each day from every place I clicked like until I learned I could not unclick like once it was done and these things started taking over my facebook page. I actually prefer targeted ads and political content to be specific to me, as perceived by corporate statistical analyses. A cartoon that makes me laugh instead of snarl. I don't want fascist propaganda in my facebook page. I don't want crap about subscribing to Ann Coulter's blog. I prefer to see posts from a place called Americans against the republican party, Americans against the tea party, Everlasting GOP stoppers, Ayn Rand drew Social Security, ARM (anti republican movement), Occupy Wall St, Hillbilly hangout, Ralph Stanley museum. Plus all the sweet sentiments from people I know and like. I don't worry over the privacy issue. We have no privacy. It will not be coming back any time soon. Don't worry, be happy.
First experience with the new laptop about made me bananas. Touch screen. I'd never done anything like that before. Had seen it in commercials and on cell phones of friends. I can adjust the size of a picture or page by fingertips on the monitor. A monitor cleaner will be in order next. Or maybe all the touching will keep it clean. We'll see. The first thing that made me nuts was having to pick where I want to go from a screen that looks like a toy baby Vada plays with. Push a button, it plays Old MacDonald. Another button makes a duck quack. Another button makes a cow moo. Always having to go back to that page takes me back to Mario Brothers, Super Mario, dropping down a hole you didn't know was there. Places to jump up and boing a number you don't know is there. Never one for video games, I was somewhat repelled by having to learn a computer made easy for people who grew up playing video games. Facing a computer designed for children with touch-screen interaction was a little too much like inter-active tv, calling a 900 number to vote yes or no, emailing a tv show's website repeatedly. I went into it thinking all I want is a glorified typewriter I can look at utube with and do emails, store pictures in and write this.
Now I have something I can Skype with, which I don't want to do but probably will get into at some point. Most of the inter-active buttons to touch or click on are about buying something or other, a vacation to Paris or Barcelona, or some resort something or other in Tahiti or any other tourist spot on earth. Cruises. Lord NO! If I ever learn how to make those buttons go away that link me up to some site that wants my credit card number for no telling what, I'll vanish them and get them out of sight. I feel like I'm at a Walmart serve-yourself register when that page is up. Insert credit card. Over time I'd like to de-commercialize this thing I can only call a product. Filling out all the introductory information like thinking up passwords and so forth, I was asked to give the laptop a name. I'd never thought about naming one, but do have a sense that a computer is a consciousness of a sort I don't understand. I went within for a name the way I look for something. I shut my eyes, blanked my mind and waited for a name to rise. Jezebel came up clearly. I thought, no, then thought, yes. That's what came up. First thing to my mind by association is Sade's song Jezebel, remembering seeing her sing it in concert, one of my favorite of her songs. I'd named a black kitten Tar Baby from a Sade song. Laptop now is named after a Sade song like a cat I loved for fifteen years. It reminds me of how much I love her music.
Such was my initial response to something that looked like the laptop it is replacing, but worked very differently. This is Windows 8 (I think) and the other was Windows 2000 (I think). Big difference initially. By today, four days later, I'm close to as familiar with it as the previous computer. It is flowing smoothly by now. When I say "it" I mean me. I'm the one flowing smoothly. Before I began to flow smoothly, I had to go over and around a run of rocks everywhere. After first couple hours with it, I had found the limits of what I was able to do, had gone to as far as I could go in each possible direction until I came to stasis. I couldn't get past several different points, so I shut it down and went to bed frustrated. I took it as something on the order of learning to throw darts at a dartboard. First several throws, the wall gets hit as much as the target. When it does hit the target, it's nowhere near the number throwing for. As time goes by, the darts land in the same quadrant as the number aimed for, and then hit the number one out of three throws, then two out of three throws. Skill at throwing darts comes slowly. I decided to calm down and learn the computer like learning to throw darts. Develop a new skill.
In my years of creeping dementia, it is good to have a mental problem to fuss over. I welcome it as a mental exercise, a new skill. Seeing how fast I'm tuning into Belle's consciousness, it won't be long until I understand at least the basic workings of my new friend. Looks like a princess in her new dress. Where did you get that? Do you really want to know? she says. It came as evidence of the truth in old hillbilly wisdom, "Be good to a kid and you'll have a friend for life." I have two "kids" I prayed up. They were the children of some of my friends. I guess I did what a "God parent" does, prayed them up, the prayers in their cases for their survival. They made it. Now that they're grown up, we're still friends like we were when they were little. I watched them grow up. One lives in the East and one in the West. The Western one was visiting from Portlandia. Our bond of friendship is better than kin. Parent-child tension is absent, never was a consideration. Betrayal of even the least trust impossible. It gives me a feeling that tells me I've lived a good life. In some cases I've done the right thing. I see it something like the ground I cared for grew a fulfilling garden. Helped two children who had enough going against them to call it everything. Gave them an adult friend who understood what they were going through and affirmed for them that it was not their fault, and a lot of times it's nobody's fault. They've come to characterize karma for me in everyday life and remind me of gratitude that my parachute put my feet down in the mountains. I never once thought about a karmic return. If I had, I could not have guessed it as it worked out. I had not imagined I'd ever see either of them again after they finished high school. The gift of the dinosaur replacement was intended toward my happiness, and it worked. I'm like Vada playing with toys on the floor.