pandemo (pandemo) wrote,

Size Matters, # 2

Yesterday, I had my first disappointment with my new car. I found something it couldn't do that I REALLY wanted to do. I tried to buy a swivel rocker and it was 2" bigger than the door to the back seat. I couldn't haul it home.

My goal of finishing my first book and sending it off someplace has been at risk all summer. Lots of excellent company (People DO come first!) got me behind, but the most entangling issue was having printer problems. In early June, the printer's toner cartridge started to run out. The replacement one ordered by catalog was to arrive in a week to 10 days. I kept writing, making changes big and small all over the already written part of the book, storing them on line and in the computer attached to the printer. But eventually, I decided I'd waited for my new cartridge patiently LONG ENOUGH, too long. I simply couldn't remember all the stuff accurately enough, and looking on screen meant looking at one thing at a time.

A call to the catalog company turned up a backorder (June order, late June b/o report) and the offer to DROP the order completely, which I decided NOT to do, as eventually, I'd still need a new cartridge. I started calling computer stores I'd used over the years. That turned up CLOSED STORES. LOTS AND LOTS OF CLOSED STORES.

I got a used toner with a problem in July just two days before my favorite computer store went out of business. I printed out about 8 of the rewritten chapters so I could remember where I'd braided in the new material, what details I'd mentioned, etc. but before I even got all the rewrites printed, the printer just refuse any input at all... I'd get the green light, then when I sent any data, the jam light would start again, even though there was nothing in there to jam.

Finding a still OPEN computer store turned out to be a problem. The one up in Des Moines (160 mile trip) had no phone number listed any more. Checking the Apple store produced no help (They made the original printer, but have since stopped making any printers at all.) Finally, I started calling school districts who had Apples to see where they got their work done. Finally, I got connected to our own computer tech person in one of his rare appearances, getting two "Try this city" references, with No store name, no repair person's name...

The first one actually HAD a very old owner, and he tried to trouble shoot over the phone. Those attempts failing, he told me if I could get the school to come up with three or four more repairs, he'd provide the pick-up and delivery. (About a 2 1/2 hour drive each way).

Well, we had two at my school, not three or four, so it was decided to split the transportation. I went in and worked on my room and the quizzes for the AR program books I read this summer to have ready for next year's double the load reading classes, getting one and a half of the three I'd expected to be able to do actually into the computer...

And had the two computers loaded by a janitor. Tuesday, a friend and I hit the road early, but the IO board is out on the printer, and maybe more damage, so instead of a $35 per hour labor charge and brining it on home, big $$ and a wait. I couldn't bring it back home with me. I sort of knew that before I set out, but hope springs eternal and all that.

The only good thing, the gal I took with me wanted to eat Chinese at THAT local restaurant, which was NOT open yet. We were done at the computer store by 10:30, a bit early for lunch, and a drive-by showed it didn't open until 11. We sat in the rain in front of the store on main street, in the middle of the street, discussing whether we wanted to drive on into Oscaloosa to eat, (an hour away) or fiddle around town until the one here opened. Now, in a big town, no way could anyone sit in the middle of the block on main street and have that discussion. Traffic would have a fit. But, this was a town of 9,000, and the rain seemed to be hurting the down town shopping a bit. Nobody came by.

I didn't care particularly where we ate, as I knew the Oscaloosa restaurant was good, and the locals we'd asked reported the local one was a buffet and very good, so we drove around looking at a new town. I saw a furniture store/floor covering sign, and parked, went in, and of the 6 pieces of well-used furniture sitting back there, ONE was my favorite "command" chair's clone!

After the third time the bottom board containing the swivel had broken, I'd given up trying to fix it and bought a new $450 chair. It was too big and clumsy for the space, not comfortable in the small of my back for long periods of time at the computer, and just generally an expensive, depressing mistake, even though I'd sat in it for about 30 minutes in the store before I bought it. Not quite long enough, but long enough to get on the salespeople's nerves...

This chair was an off blue/gray with lots of fabric ware along all the edges. But the shape and style were IDENTICAL to my sweet little soft blue one. At $25.00. (I'd bought the blue one for $30, used, over 10 years ago...) So I told the Mexican kid I'd buy it IF he could get it in the new (little) car. He went for help, another Mex. kid, and NO, it was 2" too big to go through the door.

Since I had to leave the printer, and they were to haul all three (two from school) back to Seymour when they were fixed, I asked if they were hauling in a car or a truck. Well, it was a station wagon. The chair would fit in a wagon. They were willing to be helpful. So, back to the store. I'd take the chair. They had it all set out and the tag off. I went in and paid for it. Then I went back to the computer store and got the kid most likely to haul it and took him to the store with me, showing him the chair, and being sure both sides knew what was going on, and that the furniture store knew there would be a wait before it happened. Then I took the kid back to the computer store and we went to eat Chinese, about 10 minutes after they'd opened.

Weird, huh? Only in SMALL towns.

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