Why I HATE my Macintosh Part II
For all you folks that didn’t get to read Part I of Why I Hate My Macintosh, I suggest you run out to your favorite download hangout and grab a copy of issue #7 of this fine E-mag, MY MAC. Otherwise, in some instances you may not know what the hell I’m talking about, or referring to in this, Part II of my 2 part Saga of Why I Hate My Macintosh. I have already covered my background and what has brought me to the point of finally telling anyone who’ll listen, Why I Hate My Macintosh. So go ahead and get Part I, read it, and let me know when your ready for Part II. I’ll wait, take your time, I’ll still be here when you get back. I don’t have a real life anyway.
So, how are the rest of you folks doing? Really! That’s great. Oh, I’m sorry to hear that. Yeah, that can be a real bummer for sure.
(Hey! Editor, These people think they have problems! Hmmph!!)
(Editor’s note: Peter is o.k., no need to send for a doctor!)
Oh! Your back, great, everyone up to speed then? Good. Lets go.
Keep in mind my occupation, if you would. It is arguably the biggest reason why I have come to despise my Mac.
If you recall my main reason for wanting a computer in the first place was a simple one. To keep my truck records, expense records, miles per gallon, cost per gallon, cost per mile, dollar per mile, freight rates, uncle Sam, who was screwing me out of money, and all the other business related records that I wasn’t keeping up with too well, by hand.
Jan. 1st 1995, Performa 550 Day. Also some other, lesser known holiday if I’m not mistaken. What a sight. My wife, 4 daughters and myself gathered around the big box with the big colorful apple on the side. My wife saying more than once ” Are you sure this is what you wanted, I never heard you mention a Macintosh before, I thought you had that Packard Bell all picked out.” My response to this being. ” Your right honey, but you know, I think Sales kid, I mean Rick, might have saved us from making a big mistake. I think this machine will be a much better one than that piece of crap, Packard. ” So, open the box we did. Just as I was about to set this extremely heavy computer onto our new oak dinning room table, my wife screamed, ” No, let me get something to put under it, so it won’t burn a whole in the table top.” “Good idea, honey,” I said. We didn’t know how hot the bottom of these things got.
Now, I hate putting things together, although I’ve done my share of it, mostly around Christmas and birthdays. The reason being, one time while assembling a little trike for one of the girls, I stuck a flat head screwdriver through the palm of my hand that almost, but not quite, found its way through to the other side. For a long time afterwards, if it needed a screwdriver to be assembled, it didn’t get assembled, period. Also, I was never one to read the instructions first, and always seemed to end up with extra parts. Yeah, I know guys, you’ve been there, done that. Most dads have. It was months later that I found out, not reading instructions was a sure sign of a true Mac user.
So, true to form, I commenced setting up my machine to compute stuff with. While the instruction booklet lay neatly inside its clear plastic bag.
Bingo! It’s ready. That was almost too easy. All the cables were plugged into their proper receptacles, no extra parts lying around, we’re ready for liftoff.
After about an hour of experimenting and drilling my daughters with questions like, “What’s this for, what’s this do, where the hell did that pointing arrow go?” “Move the mouse dad.” “Oh yeah, I get it.” My family slowly withdrew themselves one by one and shuffled off to bed. The last thing I heard was,” You can’t leave that thing on my new table when you go to work. Good night dear.”
I think the sun was coming up when I snuck into bed.
OK. OK. OK. You want to know why I ended up hating this thing. I’m getting to that, good Lord, be patient, people.
That’s all for Part II. No. No. Just kidding. Though it is time for a break. Anyone want a Pepsi? Sorry, but I think I’m out of adult beverages. Maybe I can rustle up some cookies, and put on a pot of coffee. Oh yeah! “Smoke em’ if you got em’.”
Feel better? Good, me too. I see a few of you still haven’t returned from the bathroom yet, so you’ll have to catch up to the rest of us when you get back. These other nice people can’t wait all day for ya. Hey, they told me to say that. It wasn’t my idea.
A couple months go by and I’m ass and elbows deep into ClarisWorks. Making one spreadsheet after another. Transferring all my hand written information into these little neat rectangular boxes of my variously ( is that even a word ) chosen spreadsheets. I never did figure out why I had to type my information into the box at the top of the screen and then click on the box I wanted the information to appear in. Why couldn’t I just click on the box I wanted and type it in directly? If anyone knows the answer to this, don’t bother e-mailing me an explanation, cause I don’t really care. I did it their way and it worked.
Remember, I couldn’t do all this catching up on my record keeping at a nice leisurely pace, like say a couple hours a night when I got home from work. My work desk has a steering wheel and 18 tires under it, and when I sit down at that desk I don’t see the home office again for 10 to 20 days.
So, when I did get home for 2,3 maybe 4 days,it was another frantic marathon sitting at the Mac trying to get caught up, and tax time was just around the corner.
I finally got caught up for the tax year 1994. I Bought MacInTax, did it myself, and Bingo, I’m in debt to the IRS once again.
Did this make me hate my Mac?
Nah, all the above was my own fault. I should have gotten a computer the day I bought my truck, or at least done a better job of keeping up with my records by hand.
No, up to this point I still thought my 550 was sliced bread. Although any computer would have had the same effect on me, I believe.
This is where things started to go bad.
What I had been doing so far was, a little word processing, lots of spreadsheets ( for me it was a lot ) and even a little data basing. Now, I ask any of you nice folks out there, “Could you, in the wildest stretch of your imagination consider this fun?” Handy, yes, necessary, yes, time saving, yes, fun, I don’t think so. Unless your a CPA. But they get paid for doing it, it has to be fun for them, else they go insane.
What I’m saying here, is I could have done the same thing on a PC as well as a Mac and probably not have noticed one bit of difference in my fun factor. If any of you disagree, I don’t want to hear about it. This is my story, remember? So humor me O.k., or I won’t invite you over for cookies and coffee anymore.
Now that I got the dirty, un-fun stuff caught up, i.e. record keeping, I decided to check out all the fun things I’ve been hearing about, that the Mac has to offer. So I dinked around with the painting and drawing parts of ClarisWorks, made a birthday card for my wife’s cousin and sent it off and printed out some color graphics on my color printer. Yeah buddy, this is fun stuff all right!
Time to get hooked up on-line. That seems to be the big rave. “Let’s give it a whirl shall we,” I told myself. So I did.
Holly Schmolly, what’s all this stuff laying around up here? Free graphics to download, free files of all sorts. Lookee here, actual programs to install on Mr. 550 to make him do all kinds of tricks. Hey! Does anybody know you have all this stuff just lying around up here? No answer. I’ll just fill my basket and get out of here. But how? Oh yeah, download manager. Beam me to the surface Scotty! I’ve learned a bit more since that first Easter egg hunt online, but it’s still fun. I got reacquainted with two of my brothers I hadn’t seen or talked to in 11 years, via e-mail. That was fun. I’m writing this for whoever cares to read it. If no one does, I’ll read it, and that’ll be fun.
Getting to the root of all this blabbering ( real word?)
Now that I’m having all this fun, I can’t be away from home for more than a couple of days, and I start thinking, I have to get back and catch up on my record keeping. After 7 days I amuse myself by reading my old copies of Macworld, MacUser, TheNet, CD-ROM Today, oops, scratch that last one, I don’t read that rag anymore, ( read my other article, also in Issue #7 of My Mac, to find out why,) and probably my favorite, Mac for Dummies, I keep in the truck. When I finally get headed back in the direction of Seattle Wa. ( my home ) I’m making a list of what I need to do on the Mac to get caught up in my books. But when I finally make it home and sit in front of Mr. 550, I go right back to doing, you guessed it, the fun stuff.
Now, I ask you, would this be happening to me if I had that crappy Packard? No.
Would I be getting my book work in order, if I had that crappy Packard? Yes, not much fun in that system. At least not as much easy fun, near as I can tell.
When it’s not easy fun, one tends to do his work and get the hell away from it.
Would my social life be more active if I had that crappy Packard? Maybe.
Would I be sitting here at 5:48AM, having not gone to bed last night, finishing this story if I had that crappy Packard? I really doubt it.
This, ladies and gentlemen, is Why I Hate My Macintosh.
Will I sell it, trade it in on a PC or give it away?
Yeah, right. What turnip truck do you think I just fell off of?
I guess if I had a PowerBook to take in the truck with me, I wouldn’t be so stressed about being away from my 550, and things might settle down and real work might get done on the computer as was the original purpose. I could do a little record keeping at night in the truck while parked alongside the Freeway in a rest area out in the middle of the Mojave desert or on a mountaintop in Colorado. I might even find the time to do some fun stuff on the PowerBook in the truck. I’m sure this would alleviate all my schizophrenic tendencies I’m having about being away from my Mac for long stretches at a time. This would make me like all you normal, well adjusted people that have a Mac at work and at home.I’ll bet I would even start liking my Macintosh again.
Yeah, that’s it, that’s the ticket! Get a PowerBook.
How can I swing a major purchase like that, at this time? Hmmmm, I got it!!
Listen up everybody!! This is the deal of the century. You suit and ties in Cupertino Ca. are also eligible for this deal. I will trade, to the first person who contact’s me via email, that has a near new PowerPC 5300c PowerBook. OK, maybe that’s asking for to much. I’ll settle for a 520c PB. Must be near new though. In trade, across the board, even Steven, they will get from me, a near new (used only once) GV 2400bps data/fax (send only) modem. How bout those apples. So what if you can get one for $15. This is all I have to trade with, and besides, I said this would be the deal of the century, didn’t I?
If this deal doesn’t strike your fancy, then give this a little thought.
Would you rather be sharing the freeways across this great land of ours with a stressed out, schizophrenic man behind the wheel of 80,000 pounds of metal going down the road at 70 mph.
Until next time…… Sleep well……