I invite you to visit also my literary blog: Journeys in Creative Writing where I post original fiction including short stories, poetry and 'Paternity', a full length mystery novel.

Saturday, 3 January 2009

We love them, hate them - computers!

I don’t know what possessed me, but I actually gave my computer a fond pat when the technician placed it on my desk this morning.

Surprised, he grinned across at me and said ‘you aren’t one of those types who has a name their machine are you?’

I hotly denied that – except to say that the closest to a regular moniker my computer had would be something like ‘you bloody thing’.

He’d had it at his workshop for almost a week, and in its place was a surprising aching void I couldn’t put a name to. The feeling was akin to grief and loss.

Many times during those first few days I had to pull myself up short from sitting down at my desk to discover the latest in Blogland.

I had to get the car out to pay an urgent bill instead of using BPay. The phone bill grew because there was no email. I mean, I live alone and I don’t particularly enjoy having conversations with the four walls.

Probably most difficult was that I couldn’t work on the re-write of the novel I’m serialising on Journeys in Creative Writing. My life was upside down.

I’m old enough to remember many many years without a computer at my disposal. But I still can’t imagine what I did without one.

We love them. We hate them. We find it very hard to be without them.

Enough to say - three days after my baby left home I rummaged around in a dark cupboard and came up with a laptop that hadn’t been used for yonks. It wasn’t mine really, but I knew the owner wouldn’t mind if I fired it up.

I battled with the plugs and USB fittings, the Ethernet connection and the virus updates and, even though I didn’t have any of my personal files, was able to get into the net and Blogland.


Do you have a name for your computer? Tell me in a comment.

By the way I've posted 'DNA and Its Secrets - Episode 12 of "Paternity", my original Australian Mystery Novel on Journeys in Creative Writing. Read it now!


  1. Even I am attached to my desktop, it is the centre of the universe somehow. My mom says,
    " Your durbar is open 24x7?" that makes me laugh.

  2. Oh - a whole week without your baby? Terrible! I go bonkers if the Internet is down for more than a day!

    I don't have a name for my computer - except to call it My Mac or My Apple, or maybe even My Preciousssssssss (but don't tell anyone, will you?)

  3. MAMPI - You should introduce your mom to Blogland and then she'll understand ...

  4. That's your secret Lady Fi - not a word will pass our lips.
    My Preciousssssssss !!

  5. June, no I don't have a name for my laptop but I would be lost without it. It's hard to imagine life without all these mod cons now. Although I tell you something I find it hard to write now - my hand writing is shocking!! I need to practice as it looks like a five years olds handwriting. Glad to see you are back posting.

  6. Computer. Hate it at times, but I'm not certain I could function without one. I mean, writing technical reports by hand and then having to type them out! I don't think my typing skills would be good enough. I'd have to pay someone else to do it. Which (come to think of it) might stimulate the economy, but my timeframes would be blown out of the water!

    When I worked in Local Government real letters had to be answered within two weeks. Email had to be answered same day. I think many of us would struggle with the time lag for many things!

  7. G'day Lilly - it was nice to slow down for a while - my kind of 'holiday'. Then the computer gliche made it even longer than I'd hoped.
    I'm so pleased my arthritic fingers will let me use a keyboard - hand writing is a different matter! It was all of the years of note taking when I was a journalist I suppose ...
    You have had some wonderful posts lately Lilly. The holday in Thailand did you no harm at all!

  8. Hi JEN
    You wouldn't remember the days when we used carbon to get a copy of our typewriting. And the joys of xxxxxing out! I reckon cut and paste is quite likely to be among the 20 wonders of the world!

  9. I don't have a name for either my desktop or my laptop except when I get the dreaded blue screen but I couldn't repeat what I call it then.

  10. No, June, I don't have a name for it but I sure would go crazy now if it were suddenly gone from my life. My parents never even knew what a computer was! I may have to think of a name for it. It almost seems like a roommate or something. It is always there.

  11. I was so thrilled when I found a computer gal that would come to my house which means I didn't have to be without my "darling" at all! But "he" was sick and I was so glad when he got "burped" and was all better! How did I survive? Like you, I have no earthly or other worldly idea! I continue to be amazed at how long I can sit in one place as long as I frequently do and not be bored, tired or aggravated -- unless "he" gets a hiccup or something!

  12. I am in awe of my comp (being rather technologically-challenged) and treat it with kid-gloves. If I had to give it a name, it'd probably be "PC-in-law", as in "mom-in-law".

  13. MARGIE - blue remarks for a blue screen eh? I know how you feel ...

  14. JUDY
    I remember my Dad was besotted with memories of his first crystal set - the foreunner of the radio! My, how fast things have moved.

  15. SYLVIA
    So your computer is a 'he'. Seems to be your baby too - who needs burping and looking after. I don't think mine has a gender ...

    There are so many reasons why oldies enjoy computers, and keeping the brain cells hopping has to be one of them.

  16. YES! A Miss Clever Award to Sucharita for her computer name. PC-in-law indeed!

    Actually they ARE another presence in the house and I have known partnerships strained because of the time and attention they demand. They can even bring out the green-eyed monster in some.

  17. I'd be a basket case without my laptop! I hate being cut off from my blog friends and email and bank statement and all the things I check online. I don't have a name for mine but understand if someone does.

  18. I think we should be whispering all of this adulation! They're real creatures you know. We don't want to have them getting above themselves.
    What do you reckon Joy?

  19. Most I ever say about my computer is "Damn you Microsoft." I really should look into getting a Mac.

    Wandered in by way of Lost and Found in India and before that Irish Gumbo.

    Look at that, it says I'm from the Milwaukee area.

  20. No name for my computer(yet), but I am dying to get one of those small babies that will fit in my purse. Coming soon!

  21. Hi WILD CHILD - welcome to the land Down Under. I think that's as good a name as any. We all know what you mean. If only Apple had won that early battle of the titans.

  22. BRENDA
    I think I'm a bit ambivalent about having a computer you could take simply everywhere. You'd never have any quiet time! We do need balance.

  23. Hi, you are the first person I've contacted via blog - I am sort of new to this. I saw your profile and love the fact that Toni Morrison is one of your favorite authors - she is absolutely "wicked".

    I look forward to following your blog...

  24. I don't have a name for my computer, but I am definitely attached to it. I started using a computer before they were even popular because I worked at Sperry Univac and they were into technology before it was popular. Anyway, it's horrible when your computer's not working, and when it's happened to me, I've felt lost. I have a laptop and I do just about everything with it.

  25. Hi PJ-365
    Welcome to Blogland!
    Yes, I believe Toni Morrison's 'Beloved' is particularly stunning. I see she's on your list as well.
    What a sunny smile you have ...
    I notice that already you are warning yourself about spending too much time at the computer and that you 'must get a life'. Don't forget that little bit of wisdom eh?

  26. Hi GERI
    Yes we wrinklies can look back on so many technological changes - as well as others of course.
    I can remember working for a newspaper whose computer filled a big room - and it would probably have done the work of a single PC!

  27. Welcome back and boy can I relate. I was an early on computer hater...really. I swore I would never learn to turn on one. I was convinced they would take over the world.!...Well I may have been right on about that one....Would I go back? Never...No special name for my machine....except sometimes...machine! A reminder!

  28. 'Machine' Linda? A la Orwell's 1984? Fair enough ...
    They do get you in but we still have to stick up for ourselves don't we!

  29. The closest I get to name-calling would be 'GDMFSOB' or Effin Laptop! Actually, Microsoft probably gets more of the epithets, more there fault than my pookie's...(softly caresses laptop case, 'There, there, dear, it's ok, I didn't mean it...)

    June, It's a pleasure to have you on the IG bus! I'll try and keep it to a gentle yank so as to not pull you over! I have seen your moniker here and there (Braja's place the first time), have been meaning to drop in. Thank you for the nudge.

    I saw where you took a degree at 60 - in writing - and can I say I am in awe? A very high bar that is, and I now have no excuse to not go back and try the same thing myself! Bravo!

    Thanks again, and I look forward to hearing more from you :)

  30. IG
    I'm sure we'll hear from each other some more.
    Yes my creative writing/history degree was begun at 60 and I whopped the kids in the classes with my many HDs. Mind you I had the huge advantage of life experience and eons as a commercial writer - journalist and corporate PR manager - so it was not a level playing field.

    Creative writing is quite different and fascinating and I'm finding that I am hooked more each day.

    Have you seen my other blog Journeys in Creative Writing? There you can find lots of my short stories plus a novel which is drawing to a conclusion episode by episode.

    We all feel the same about computers don't we?

  31. I went to school for computers and have built and worked on too many to actually name them. I do admit that I talk to them on occasion. Actually, it's more like yelling. But I'm afraid that I'm addicted. I couldn't live without one now.

    I wouldn't know anybody who works with computers regularly who doesn't feel the same way. They're just like people aren't they?

  33. The only name this poor machine has at times is POS. Its the initials of what I should not be calling it, LOL. I can't imagine not having it, and I do miss it on my regular forays into the wilds. I take an old read ancient laptop out there with me. There is no internet connection, and barely any cell phone service, but I can use it for the word processor.

  34. i too am so attached to my friends say its my boyfriend...and my mom-in-law feels i am addicted.

  35. Eric
    It would be sacrilegious to have the web in your wildlife hide. Even the laptop is a bit iffy.

    At least the computer doesn't talk back too much.

  37. Hi June, I have never named my computer, but my husband has a few juicy names for it! LOL

  38. As they do Clara. Some partners are quite competitive about the attention we give them - and the joy we accumulate from the experience.

  39. Hi June, I don't have a name for my lap top, but I am never too far away from it, if I can help it. Before the lap top I used my girls desk top and shared it four ways. It got sick and we were without it for 10 days. I used to stare at the space where it lived...telling myself, "It's OK, it'll be back soon." That's what made me spend my tax cheque on a computer of my own. :)

  40. HI EATON
    I just heard on the news about a wonderful scheme in Victoria that is making cheap internet available to housing commission high rises. They say pilot studies have shown that it helps with community in the buildings and has all sorts of other good by-products.
    The power of the net!


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