Saturday, October 7, 2006

October 7, 2006: Diary of an Internet Deprived Madwoman

Thursday, Oct. 5

8:30 a.m.: I check my email, do a little blog-surfing, and cheerfully head off for the day, blissfully unaware of what is to come.
9:30 a.m.: Jesse reports that “something is funny with the internet,” but we are running late for a field trip, so I ignore him.
2 p.m.: We return. I try to check my email….and nothing. So, I take a short nap.
2:30 p.m.: The internet is still not working. I call Randy about something else and mention to him that neither of our computers will hook up to the internet, and he tells me to call Charter right away. Apparently, if our wireless isn't working, it'll all be OK...but if our hard-wired computer isn't hooking up, something is WRONG.
2:45-5 p.m.: I am on the phone with Charter. I type in a plethora of codes, unplug and plug in various cords, and listen to twelve messages about how I should upgrade my services. I make several panicked calls to Randy. In the meantime, I am calculating exactly what it means to be without e-mail. Nothing that the four Charter reps tell me to do works. One of them expresses disgust that we have an Apple mouse hooked up to our PC. I break out in a sweat and wish for a shower. The Charter guy finally tells me that he will send a technician out on MONDAY afternoon to take a look. I consider biting my nails or pulling out large handfuls of hair.
5 p.m.: I talk to BrownSugar. "What's wrong?" she asks. I tell her I am so frustrated I can hardly talk. She thinks I am crazy when I tell her it's the computer, not the kids!
5:15-45: Randy arrives home and calls Charter. He experiences all of the above (except for the sweating). But since he is a well-versed, experienced MAN who can speak computer-ese, he is finally able to get someone who tells him that Charter is experiencing major server problems and THERE IS NOTHING WE CAN DO ABOUT IT.
6 p.m.: My stomach is in knots, but we have a dinner engagement and head out. The first thing I see at this family's house is their laptop, sitting invitingly in the kitchen. I resist the urge to ask if I can check my email. (I don't know them well enough to do this.)
9 p.m.: I call Blogless Leigh to let her know the tragedy in our home. Mrs. Choco has already called to let them know. Blogless Leigh assures me that nothing is going on--that I'm not missing anything and that she's only received a few emails all day. But I am thinking about all the irons I have in the fire that require e-mail access, and I begin developing an ulcer.

Friday, Oct. 6
8:30-9:30 a.m.: Randy is on the phone with Charter again. The final answer: They've been updating software and ran into a major SNAFU. They'll "call" us when they have a solution. We both roll our eyes, sure we'll never get a phone call.
10 a.m.: I encourage the kids to hurry and get their work done so that we can head to Panera for lunch with the laptop. The phone calls begin: "You didn't answer my email, so I thought I'd better call and see if....."
12-12:45 p.m.: Miracle of miracles, the Charter guy actually calls just as we are about to leave for Panera. He has a solution that has been working for some customers, and it actually works!! I am back online! I quickly check my 70 emails and send couple of responses, but the kids are looking forward to Panera, so we head out before I have a chance to really catch-up. (We take our laptap to Panera just so that we can look cool and important.)
4:45 p.m.: We return from lunch, errands, and fencing. I have to get ready for a dinner, so again I don't have time to check things out.
11 p.m.: We return from our outing, and Randy reports that the internet is again out. I am much calmer now as I head to bed, pondering how I'll get stuff done this weekend without e-mail. And how can I feel fully refreshed without reading blogs? What if something exciting happens? Should I take up a new hobby?

Saturday, Oct. 7
8:30 a.m.: Randy turns back on the computers and plugs stuff back in, and all is well. We head off for soccer games.
1:30 p.m.: At last, the internet seems stable and I am back again, feeling tremendously relieved. Is there a lesson in all of this? Probably. I should probably say something profound, such as:
"Being without the intenet for nearly 48 hours caused me to reflect upon the ways in which I spend my leisure time and the tremendous dependence that our society places on being connected electronically. Because of the irrational trauma this caused in my personal life, I made a resolution that I would make a concerted effort to decrease my reliance upon electronic communication and spend more time speaking one-on-one with people, focusing more on interpersonal relationships at a face-to-face level. I resolved to return to actual hard-copy letter-writing and phone calls as a chief means of communication, and vowed to return to writing in a paper diary, rather than chronicling the details of my personal life in a public forum."

Yeah. I probably should say something like that, but I'm just so darn happy to be back in the Blogosphere!

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