Why I HATE my Macintosh Part I

Thats right folks, I’ll come right out and say it. ” I hate my Macintosh computer.” I’m finished pretending to myself that it’s the greatest thing to come along since sliced bread, as so many of you Mac users out there seem to think.I’ll bet there’s a good number of you who feel just like me, but are afraid to admit it.If you think you might have these same feelings buried deep down in that almost forgotten file folder in your brain, then take my hand, come out of the closet and we’ll explain to the rest of these Mac nerds, why we hate our Macs.

First of all, I would like to say to all you people who’s life work involves using a PC on a daily basis, “You will never have this dilemma”. You people more than likely shut your PC off at the end of the day and thank God you don’t have to look at it again till morning. God Bless you people and have a nice life.

If you use a Mac at work, then you probably don’t have to worry about what the rest of us go through, as you people are in total control of your feelings and priorities. If you same people have a Mac at home also, you are in double contol. That’s kinda like double clutching a 15 gear transmission. Everything meshes real smooth. Just, as I suspect your lives run. For you people, life is a breeze, no pressure. Safe in the knowledge that there is always a Mac nearby if needed. I hate you people.

Oh forgive me, I didn’t mean to say that, I don’t hate you. In fact I wish I could be more like you. It’s the Macintosh I hate, yeah that’s it, thats the ticket, the machine, not the people using them.

Who’s that leave? Oh, people with Mac’s at home, but don’t use computers in thier work. As long as you people get home every day, you’ll do alright.

That leaves me and a silent minority of people who have Mac’s at home, but only get to visit with thier machines ( as in my case ) 80 to 90 days out of the year. We are the ones who are stressed, confused, bitter and, at times schizophrenic. Watch out for us.

Why do I hate the Mac, you say. I thought you’d never ask.

First off, I’m a long distance truck driver, and I own my own truck, hence, I have my own business, albeit only a one man operation. How much paperwork and accounting can a one man show generate? Six hundred and seventy eight pounds to be exact. After the first year of running this little one man circus, and seeing how far behind I was getting in my record keeping, I mentioned to my wife that maybe we should get a computer. She agreed. She asked me, “Do you know anything about computers?” I shook my head, no, do you? Same response from her.

Hmmm, better ask the kids. They say they use both Mac and IBM in school. OK, better do a little research of my own on this. I read the ads in newspapers. Hmmm, PC prices seem to be lower than the Mac. One point for PCs. I talked to the people at the company I lease my truck to. They all said PC is the only way to go, although no one there had ever used a Mac. 2 points for PCs. I read brochures, spent hours looking at machines in the big computer and appliance stores. As little as I knew about comparing models, RAM, Disk Space, Storage, Speed, megabytes, megahertz, Floppy, Dopey and Sneezy, I did know that bigger was usually better, except when it comes to handing over dollar bills.

So having reached what I thought was an educated decision. I opted for a certain Packard Bell model. “OK honey, I’ve made up my mind, now all we have to do is see who’ll give us the best price on what we want.” Yes sir, an educated and informed shopper, that’s me.

Weeks went by. I wanted to get the system for Xmas of 94, but read somewhere that prices will drop after the holidays.
Being the educated and informed shopper that I am, I waited.

Then, on ( I kid you not ) Jan 1st 1995, while watching mega football games on TV and looking through the ads in the newspaper between plays, my eye caught the price of the P/B computer system that I had chosen to have reside with the Miner family as soon as the right price came along. Was this ever the right price. Over a thousand dollars less than anyone else. I tell you, I looked at that picture in the ad real close to make sure it was the same one I wanted. It was, no doubt about it, same model #, same go-withs, same everything.

“Let’s go honey, to hell with football, this deals to good to pass up. Grab a check, were going to The Good Guys computer store.” About half way there, Carol say’s ” This could be a misprint in the ad you know.” So what, I said, if it is, we’ll just make them sell it to us for that price anyway.

Carol was right, before we got ten feet inside the door of The Good Guys there was a picture of the ad I had been drooling over all morning. Along side it, a great big Disclaimer stating in so many words, ” Ain’t no way in hell are you getting this system for the price listed in this ad, simply because some half wit schmoo at the print shop can’t read”.

So much for making them do anything. “Oh well, we’re here, we might as well look around, honey.”

In enters the person who would change my life forever, the salesman. If I ever see this person again in my life time, he’s dead meat! Actually, let’s call him the sales kid, half my age and with one of those funny short haircuts.

Sales kid: “Can I help you with anything sir?”

Me: “Yeah, Sell me that Packard Bell system for the price advertised.”

Sales kid: Big smile on his face “Boy, I wish I could sir, but did you read the Discl…..”

Me: “Yeah, yeah, I read it, I knew it must have been a misprint”(as I’m thinking) hey buddy, I’m an educated and informed shopper.

Sales kid: one eyebrow raised “Do you know a lot about computers, sir?”

Me: “Well, this will be my first computer, however I have researched this upcoming purchase quite thoroughly.” After all, (I’m thinking) I am an educated and informed shopper!

Sales kid: “May I ask what the main function of this computer will be?”

Me: “Huh?”

Sales kid: little grin “What will you be using it for, mainly?”

Me: (Thinking) I better not say Huh? again, that’s not cool. What the hell’s he think I’m going to use it for, I’m going to compute stuff with it, you dummy “”Well, you see I have this small business….. and I proceeded to tell Sales kid about my out of control record keeping and how I wanted to get my life more organized.”

Sales kid: “I see. Well sir, have you giving any thought to an Apple?”

Me: No thanks, apples make my dentures loose “Not really.”

Sales kid: “Let me show you these Mac Performa’s over here.”

Me: Damn I almost said Huh? again. Gotta watch that “Yeah, OK, but I really was thinking along the lines of an IBM clone. I haven’t done much research on the Mac” what did he call it, Mac performance? computer

Well, Sales kid gave me the grand tour of the Performa 550, which he said would be ideal for what I would use it for, and it was on sale! Not wanting to seem like an uneducated, uninformed shopper, I asked him the obvious question. ( By now, I learned that Sales kid had a name, it was Rick and we were buddies) “Well, Rick” I said, “tell me, why is that machine, (pointing to a 475 next to the 550) $100 more than the 550, and it doesn’t even have a CD ROM tray, and the model # is lower than the 550?” Real good question, Pete, I was thinking to myself. Rick blurted out something about 68030 and 68040 Processors. “I see”, was my reply. Almost as bad as Huh?

One hour and $2300 later I was the proud owner of a Performa 550 ( not performance after all. As I thought earlier. ) A Color StyleWriter 2400 printer, and a way to expensive Surge Protector that I later found at K-Mart for half the price I paid.

After handing over my check and waiting for the Great Electronic Banking Gods to tell Rick that I had enough money in my account to pay for all this, I had one more question. “Rick”, I said, ( As Rick is scanning the store for his next customer) “I need a mouse pad for this thing don’t I?” “Oh yeah, there over there in aisle 3. Have a Happy New Year sir.” “Whoa, Whoa, Rick, I just spent $2300 in this store, I only have a couple bucks in my pocket and I only brought one check with me. Can’t you throw a mouse pad into the deal for free?” Uh, well, I’ll have to check with the manager.” “You do that, Rick, I’ll wait. Good God!”

Fifteen minutes later I had my mouse pad. Not a brand new one still in the package, but a used one that was on Ricks desk, next to his IBM Clone. It says The Good Guys on it. Go Figure!

Is this why I hate my Macintosh? Nah. All of the above is just Free Enterprise at work. I wouldn’t want to see it any other way. I did learn however, that I was not the educated and informed shopper I thought I was.

For the real reasons why I hate my macintosh, you will have to wait for Part II of the II Part continuing Saga of “Why I Hate My Macintosh”


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