Friday, July 17, 2009

BRILLIANT SHOPPING

JC needs a new computer. He's using the Dell I bought nine years ago, and upgraded all by myself upgraded. Yes, it's still operating, but with all the wireless high speed internet stuff I've added, it's creeping, inching along unbearably slowly.

Diligent Em reads computer magazines. The latest gizmos fascinate me. I breeze through the big print, browse though the smaller print, squint at the fine print, absorbing numbers that indicate restrictions and additional costs. A good shopper has to know what's going on.

The latest stuff doesn't bewilder me, though it's bewildering. I browse online, and learn, by wandering in the black forests, and overgrown jungles of various websites. Even the unclear directions, clicks that get me nowhere, take me to something that tells me what I want to know -- like bits -- 64 bits versus 32 bits.

It's not boring, just enormously time-consuming. And almost fun. If you called me and asked me what computer I think you ought to buy, I'd impress you with my educated knowledge and opinion.

So ...
I called Dell. I know the number. I waded through a twenty-minute talk with sharp, knowledgeable Bryce. Impressed him with my educated questions and got myself a pal. He emailed me a list of what we'd decided on -- 38 items, an order number, a price.

I told my pal Bryce I'd check it out with my husband and call him back.

Didn't need permission -- knew JC would be delighted, but gee ... boxes arriving, unpacking, plugging in, installing the midi, the high speed stuff ... gee ... not next weekend ... the week after?

That was April 14th. Brilliant, decisive, knowledgeable shopper Em has been hemming and hawing -- worrying, fretting -- installing and configuring our thirty software programs is a three-day, full-time job. I called Mike, a high-priced professional who'd helped me in 2007 -- got an even higher price per hour for him to do the job -- no way José-- ridiculous! waste of money!

On my breaks, I scribbled lists, hunted for installation CD's -- tore up my office looking for one -- had double-double-toil-and-trouble nightmares about templates, virus protecting, old versions, updating drivers ...

Boom! July 4th ... Sarah Palin breathlessly, illogically quitting her governor's job -- soccer Mom letting us know she could face the music, "you betcha."

Em picks up the phone and calls her pal at Dell. Didn't expect he'd be at work, but he was. Gave Bryce my credit card numbers and bought it. Called Mike the high-priced professional, and you betcha -- did the most brilliant thing a computer expert like me can do -- I hired him to do the job.

Whoopee ... I'm facing the music.

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