Sunday, May 15, 2011

It'll get ya.....

Lately its been ...."everything seems to be going wrong" around here. Hmmmm...that prompted me to wonder if Mercury is retrograde again. I checked and its not. Not that it would have made a difference one way or just would have given me an excuse to use. "Oh yeah....Mercury is retrograde, you know....and that's when stuff goes wrong". such luck.

I guess we can start with Blogger going haywire. I have been having problems with my Followers widget on Blogger for months and its never been fixed. I figure they must need some time to work on it.....and I'll be patient. In the meantime....if you don't see your avatar in my Followers widget or if you just plain don't see Followers at isn't because I removed them. I guess they are still visible if you use Chrome. A lot of people have told me they can see them yeah, it could be just me. I use Firefox.

Anyway, Blogger went goofy and some people lost a lot of stuff. I didn't lose too much, some comments and my update about my ......shudder.....eye. I guess we should all keep back-ups of what we post. What's that? You do? Oh well.....I don't and I guess I should.

Then came our usual weekly and my family's. We have supper and a movie....maybe two movies. We had Mexican that night and then settled in for a good movie. We put the disc in the VCR and........nothing. It wouldn't read the disc.....hell, it wouldn't even acknowledge that it was a VCR. At that point I think it may have thought it was a riding lawn mower. We fooled around with it and fooled around with it. More than an hour went by. My mood was getting dark. Now this poor little VCR, that is probably 8 years old, if not more.....has been a good one but it has been acting up here and there. Things like you having to rap sharply on top of it or the drawer won't open to accept the disc. Just small stuff like that. But it prompted me to buy another VCR around Christmas. I found one on sale and so, knowing that I would need it shortly, I purchased it. Notice I said Christmas! It has been sitting in the box, unopened, next to my TV in the living room ever since. Neither my daughter or I know anything about VCR's and everyone I asked to hook it up for me always said, "yeah, sure,.....I'll do that for you next my next life." Needless to say, it never got hooked up, let alone opened up.

So we decided, how hard can this be? Kids can do this for god's sake. You just take one cable off the old one and put it in the opening labeled the same in the new one. Piece of cake!

We pulled everything out from the shelf under the TV (Good Lord it gets dusty under there!). I did the brain wracking job of putting the batteries in the remote. Hey! I had to do my part too. Well....seems as though the cables I have hooked up to the old VCR have a pin in the fittings and the new cables have color coded plugs. Of COURSE the new VCR did not have any places for a fitting that had a pin. This truly puzzled us and we ended up putting everything back in the box. We replaced the old VCR right where it had been and stared at it for a while, our brains whirling. I must say that perseverance paid off in this respect because after fooling with it for only another hour or so, we did get it to acknowledge the disc and to actually play it without further incident. Of course we were afraid to even so much as sneeze during the movie in fear that the vibrations would make it revert to thinking it was, perhaps, a coffee pot and therefore refuse to play the disc.

We had a terrific thunder-storm later that night. I slept through most of it. In the morning my computer would not turn on. It was completely dead! Upon further investigation, I found that my Comcast modem was also dead. I tried to reset it and it laughed at me. Now, picture this....if you possibly can. Underneath my computer desk I have a conglomeration of wires that is beyond description. I am afraid to mess with any of them and leave it all to the guy who works on my computer. If it wasn't for the fact that most of my stuff had power and was working in that room, I would have thought I had blown a fuse. I was at a loss and so I called my computer guy. The first thing he did was tell me to check the surge protector power strips and that he'd be out on Sunday to take a look. Now....he didn't say he'd FIX it on Sunday....just that he'd take a look. That always makes me nervous.

Well, I did find that my computer and modem are plugged into a battery back-up system. I do that because power failures have fried two computers over the years. Somehow the battery back up had been turned off. When I turned it back on.....I had power to the computer and to the modem once again.....but now I have this irritating "chirp" that is going on. The back-up system doesn't seem to be recharging. I have a feeling that it is dead. He'll be here in an hour and will tell me.

Once I had the computer up and running I felt like I belonged in the world again. (sad, isn't it?) I have since noticed that my adding machine and my answering machine are not working. I'm hoping that its because they have become unplugged when I was messing in the jumble of wires under there. I went to recharge my cell phone and the battery is no longer taking a charge. I really can't complain....I've had the phone for over 10 years. Are you seeing a pattern here?

So.....while I had the system running, I went to my bill-paying sites and scheduled my payments through the end of this month......just in case. Yep, just in case he has to take my computer and I am without for a period of time. See? I'm trying desperately to head off Murphy at the pass.....but if there is possibly ONE tiny way something can go wrong......of course it will. But, you knew that, didn't you?

Update: My computer guy was here.(BLESS his heart) The new VCR is hooked up and the old one that is temperamental about working is now in the den. It will play VHS tapes and I have a bunch of those so I might as well keep it. The battery back-up, in all likely-hood took a 'hit' during the storm. He says those back-ups can only take one hit and then that's it. He's had his for 10 years and its still working. This is my second one in 5 years. Go figure. Anyway, he'll be back in a few days....I'm getting a memory upgrade.


Coffeypot said...

I think Mercury is defunct now. Ford did away with them years ago. And I have a surge suppressor with my computer and printer cords running to it. The protector sits on the floor behind the computer desk and is well out of the way of my feet (the only legs in the family long enough to reach it.) I came down to check on the weather forecast on the PC and it was dead. I tried to reboot and beg and plead, but it was dead. I could see dollar signs with little wings flurrying out the window. I was about to break the good news to Judy when I noticed the printer was off, too. Humm! A light went off in my head and I looked under the desk and, sho nuff, the protector was off. I flipped it back on and everything started to reboot. My thoughts are, the cat was doing his nightly bug security patrol and stepped on the on/off switch. Funny how something like that can make you feel like you just won the lottery.

myevil3yearold said...

Thunderstorms took out my mom's central heat and air and she had to live here for a week! Yikes! It was 95 degrees this past week. Of course now it is 46. Here in Tn you get all 4 seasons in 1 week.

Jamie said...

Oh HOW I KNOW what you have been going through, you know I had the same thing here a couple of weeks ago. Yes, without the computer, I too am lost. BLEH. But yea! that you are back up and running. :)

Things in my world have been plain crappy in some ways,okay in others. PAIN is killing me, the rest is alright. Miss "talking" to you, lots. Big big hugs. :)

Mary said...

I think we've all been there, I decided a while back to make myself understand and learn the in's and outs of most of my equipment, and for the most part I feel I'm pretty successful. However, I still don't trust my judgement. Then there are the times when I actually figure out how to do something and I have no idea how I did it. I've suffered through 3 total crashes and it's devastating, and quite frankly sad how much I rely on this stupid machine. I think I will back up my "junk" today. :-)

Peruby said...

The back-up unit can only take one hit? Is it a UPS (un-interrupted power supply)? When one chirps at any of my schools we replace the battery in it.

Good luck. Maybe you can have an electrician check your power coming into your house and re-ground it if necessary.

Happyone : ) said...

Glad to hear you finally got that new VCR hooked up.
I use Firefox and can see your followers just fine.
I was lucky and didn't lose anything with the blogger outage. The post that disappeared for a while was sitting back in draft mode. I just reposted it.

Anonymous said...

If the two of us stood together in a lightening storm, I wonder which one of us would get hit? I'd say it would be a home run for the lightening and a zero for two where we're concerned. Just think of the large hole we'd leave in the ground!

Leann said...

Oh Val, what an enlightening and entertaining post. I feel the same way about electronics. How hard can it be??!! It ALWAYS befuddles me. Hope you get everything back up and running.