Sunday, November 09, 2008

The Other Kind Of Cable

I can just never seem to upgrade anything without some sort of complication involving missing components, multiple trips to various stores and, in the worst case scenario, several calls to the nice people in tech. support.  As an added bonus for anyone who has to deal with me during these events,  I become ever more shrill as things progress along the path of insanity.

Frankly, you'd think that my divorce from my PC and subsequent marriage to a Mac would have been more fraught with this kind of drama.  And yet it wasn't.  It was a pretty smooth transition.  I fought changing platforms for a long time.  However, with the Maine Learning Technology Initiative pretty much walking hand in hand with the makers of The Big Red Fruit, it really just made sense to go ahead and switch over to the computer that was most compatible with the one I use in my classroom.  

And the MacBook Pro is pretty darned sweet.  It's all shiny.  I am easily swayed by shiny things...

On the downside, though, the new computer was not on speaking terms with my printer.  It tried.  But there was no way it was going to work.  The printer had Mac issues.  I had somehow managed to purchase one of the few printers made by this company with no available drivers for making the lines of communication happen with a Mac.  I did what I do best in these situations.  I ignored the problem.  Printing is overrated anyway.  Plus, I knew it was going to be a drama.  It always is...

A year later, I am now ready to replace the printer.  I vowed two things.  First, that I would have a list of everything I needed to make this thing work without 75 trips back to the store.  Secondly, that I would not purchase another printer from the people who hate my Mac.  

Long story short:  After searching several stores for the printer I wanted, I finally gave up and accepted that the universe wants me to have a printer from the Mac Haters.  At least this time I bought one that was compatible.  And, happiest of days, I wouldn't need to worry about a cable since I already had one for the old printer.

I even remembered to buy paper.

Would it surprise you to know that I have eight thousand USB cables?  I buy them all the time.  I am always in need of a USB cable.  They hide on me.  Or they overeat and suddenly don't fit the things they are supposed to fit.  Sometimes, they get skinny and fall out of the port.  I have USB cables a-plenty.  I could carpet the land in USB cables and still have enough left over to fashion a lovely headdress for myself.

Would it further surprise you to know that not one of those cables will fit the new printer?  I thought not.

I bought another one this morning.  It is of the "universal" variety and has enough options to fit anything that might require cabling.  There is no way I could miss with this beauty.  

Would it surprise you to know that the universal USB cable does not fit into the recessed port due to its multiple USB-ing abilities?  You really shouldn't be shocked by that.  It didn't surprise me even the tiniest bit.  The universality of the Can't Possibly Fail USB cable renders it too huge to connect in that tiny space.

  I'm used to this sort of thing by now.  It's just my process.

Meanwhile, I didn't really have the time to get all stressed about the whole thing.  The Absurdly Gi-normous Kitty, perhaps sensing that I needed a diversion from all this cabling, decided that today was a good day to renew his attempts at making friends with the Big, Fluffy Kitty.  Essentially, this means that he stalks and tortures her until the whole thing devolves into a hissing, snarling event with much chasing about the manse.  The BFK will tolerate Baby Brother.  But that's about it.  Mommy needed to intervene.  

I called a halt to the whole thing, by bringing out the vacuum cleaner.  Frankly, after all that capering about by the furry ones, a little carpet restoration was needed.  The combatants took the hint and raced off to their separate nooks to hide from the scary appliance.

The BFK emerged first and took her revenge by snagging the AGK's favorite napping spot.

The AGK, upon venturing out of hiding, was momentarily flummoxed by this turn of events.  He quickly realized, however, that the windows were open to the unseasonably warm November breezes.  He decided that the window seat was an acceptable substitute.

With order restored and no working printer available for my use, I used the time to get some sleeves on the "dishcloth."  I had time on my hands thanks to the contrary nature of USB cables and the pattern seemed to indicate that the "dishcloth" needed sleeves.

Although one has to wonder in these weather conditions if sleeves are really required.  A tank-style dishcloth might make more sense...

With the a movie on the printerless laptop, I had the perfect conditions for sitting and knitting.  And tinking.  The "simple" patterning at the yoke has gone about fifteen different kinds of wrong and I have set it aside for the time being.  Hopefully, it will opt to behave itself after a little time out in the knitting basket.  The issues have ranged from miscounted stitches to my forgetting to account for a decrease after the first tinking.  I have only one possible explanation for this sort of ongoing calamity.

The "dishcloth" has been talking to the USB cords...



Mel said...

Clearly what you need is an adapter to go from the recessed USB port to the Universal USB cord. Or maybe three of 'em.

trek said...

Sounds like you have "non-cable issues": no cables on the laptop and no cables on the "dishcloth".


kmkat said...

After I got a Mac Mini I was printerless for months. HP (I think that is the company you may be referring to) did not have a Mac driver for my laser printer. How lame is that? Eventually Smokey bought me a Brother laser printer that, altho it is compatible with the Mac, doesn't work as well or as reliably as my HP LaserJet did.

My HP scanner has sat useless for two (2!) years. Someday I will attempt to connect it.

mehitabel said...

There is a Mac printer in my garage--a Laserwriter, to be exact. It works with my old baby Mac laptop--the one that runs OS 7.5. I need to print some things out from the baby before I turn it over to the nice people at Goodwill. Too bad we can't try my printer with your Mac!
And yes, I have machines from the Evil Empire now. At least they are working well for me, as much as I miss my Macs!

catsmum said...

that's one gooooood looking dishcloth

Leigh said...

Ah yes, printer vs. OS. I'm familiar with this senerio, though from my little part of the universe, it's the Linux-haters that I have to deal with. :)

Karen said...

I feel your pain. We dumped the OS we had and went with Linux. All has been good but my printer/scanner/copier has decided it is only a printer/copier. This really stinks when I want it to scan.

Mia said...

I'm with ya on the apple (she says lovingly fondling her iphone).. hehehe.

I started on a Mac, switched over because of work, and now many years later, I vow my next purchase will be a Mac.. so much less hassle :)

Mostly :)

Cursing Mama said...

I won't even discuss my bizzare printing system... unless you really want to know then I might reveal all.

I'm not sure if vacuuming is worth it anymore. The cats seem to take this as a sign to walk over every inch of all the carpet to restore the "cute" footprints they left behind last time I vacuumed. Sometimes they are so brave they will footprint right behind me as I vacuum...aren't they lovely!

Yarnhog said...

For this reason alone it is worth being married. I declare any and all tech support problems to be "man jobs" and leave the room. How they get dealt with, I don't know or care, much as my husband has no idea how the closets mysteriously restock themselves with clean clothes. (Lest ye fret the gender roles, allow me to mention that "carpentry" and "laying tile" fall into the "woman jobs" category around here, while "baking" and "Thanksgiving dinner" are indisputably "man jobs".)

Jeanne said...

Cabling nightmares, been there. For me, it's not the computer but the stereo equipment and TV. I just went through it a couple weeks ago. My temporary roommate last year left behind a behemoth of a TV as "payment" for rent. I finally got help relocating it to the TV room. I also swapped out the old VCR and DVD players for the DVD/VHS recorder combo I'd picked up last year.

You'd think trading three for two would simplify matters. It didn't. I still haven't figured out how to get the "recording to VHS from cable broadcast" side of the equation hooked up.

I feel your pain.