Several days ago my computer stopped working. I would turn it on and hear the noise it makes when it comes on, but the monitor remained black. The little blue power light was blinking, so I knew the monitor was plugged in. I mentioned it to Cliff reluctantly because this computer and monitor are under a year old. I have an iPad, so it doesn't even get that much use. Cliff, predictably, asked just how much money I think we've spent on computers over the years... thousands?
"It's OK," I said. "I can use your laptop when I need a computer."
The one he uses was originally mine, but when the old one he had before ceased to work, I told him to take my newer one and I'd buy a cheap desktop. That laptop he inherited from me always had some problems, but it's a Dell, and I got it at Costco: Dell gives a one-year warranty on all their computers and Costco adds another year. The power cord wouldn't plug in tightly even when we first got it, and finally wouldn't work at all. Costco's Concierge service had us send it to them and it came back better than new.
Believe me when I say I'm done buying anything but Dell, even though they aren't as dependable as they used to be, and I'm only buying them at Costco.
So, we were back to sharing one computer. I'd log on and have my own favorites, etc., and log off when I was done. Sharing wouldn't have been a big deal ten years ago, but since Cliff retired he spends a lot of time on the computer. He enjoys Facebook and Craigslist, and has numerous tractor-related sites he keeps up with. He spends more time on the actual computer than I do, although if you count all the playing I do on the iPad, I'm still way ahead of him in hours spent.
He could tell I didn't like sharing (my siblings were grown and gone by the time I was three, so I led the childhood of an only child: I don't share well).
He told me it really would be OK if I ordered another laptop, so I did some shopping on the Costco website, found one that would serve my purposes just fine for around $500, and was about to order it when I saw that if I would avail myself of Costco's Anywhere Visa, the warranty would be for four years. We only have two credit cards, one of which we seldom use. We pay the total amount due every month. We don't need another credit card, but this seemed like such a deal, I applied and, of course, was approved. Now I sat at home waiting for my card to arrive before ordering my new laptop.
Cliff asked me if perhaps the problem was the monitor, not the computer. "Of course not," I said. That monitor is practically new."
"Cora tipped the computer chair over the other day," he went on. "Maybe she unplugged something."
"No, I used the computer a few times after that. And I know the monitor is plugged in because the blue power light is blinking."
Yesterday the grandson's wife, Heather, messaged me and asked if I had any use for a monitor. I told her I'd take it, thinking that this would prove to Cliff the problem didn't lie with the monitor.
Early this morning I decided to do something I hadn't yet tried, since I was going to be messing around down there on the floor later on hooking up a different monitor anyway. I laboriously got to my aching knees and shone a flashlight on the back of the computer: The monitor, although it was plugged into the wall, wasn't connected to the computer!
I will tell you that I still wouldn't mind having a laptop again, but we are trying to get a vacation trip together for the coming year. The $500 plus I was going to spend on a computer would have come out of the money I'm saving up for that trip. So I have somewhat mixed feelings. But for the most part I'm glad at how this turned out.
I'm not proud of my stupidity (laziness?) at not checking my computer's connections sooner, but all's well that ends well. I'm sure glad they took their sweet time sending my new credit card, which I will likely cut in pieces and toss in the trash when it arrives.