Tuesday, May 3, 2005

Whoa, Nellie

I am old enough to have known some people who have actually lived through a runaway horse adventure.  Not too long ago, in the way I figure time, people's main mode of transportation was THE HORSE.

The horse is a large square animal with a leg at each corner, and you got from place to place by sitting on his back... sitting right down on the horse.. and saying GITTYAP. 

You steered the horse with reins.  Some reins ran to a bit in the horse's mouth.  He didn't care much for the bit, who would?  You tugged on his mouth to make him whoa (stop). 

Sometimes, the family horse, Fred, or Bessie, or Dobbin or Nellie would become agitated, and TAKE THE BIT IN HIS TEETH (so you couldn't tug on his mouth) and take off for Cleveland at a dead run.  There you were: completely helpless, on a horse that wouldn't pay attention to your tugging or your yelling or your tears.  Where Nellie wanted to go, you went.  And fast.  You couldn't bail out, Nellie was going full speed.  You hung on.

What am I getting at?  Just this.

My Hewlett-Packard sometimes takes the bit in his (her) teeth and runs.  Tugging at the reins, that is... clicking on the red x in the corner of the window... doesn't stop him.  Sometimes turning off the computer at the console doesn't stop him.  I have had to UNPLUG THE COMPUTER FROM THE WALL. That is equivalent to knocking Nellie unconscious with a club.

So, what would you do with a horse that ran away with you?  When you finally somehow got control, you gingerly urged him home or shopping, or visiting, with kind words and nice slow, soft guidance.  So I do with my computer.

And if your horse ran away with you two or three times a day, you would take him to an expert for retraining.  There are such specialists for computers too.  But if that failed and he continued to run... you'd SELL him.  And if you couldn't sell him, or even give him away (there is little market for used computers) you would take him to the GLUE factory.  (That is a gentle metaphor that means you'd put him down... which means KILL him.)

A horse that runs away is useless.  So is a computer.

I hope my Hewlet-Packard has been listening to this.


kateh2ocolorart said...

ROFL Dad...I hope it has been listening too!  GL with that!  Kate

plieck30 said...

I sure like this comparison. Cute entry. Paula

mavarin said...

There are a few things you can try that may or may not help with your runaway computer.  First, make sure the cache is empty, the temp files have been dumped and the recycle bin is empty.  Second, if you have Norton SystemWorks, use it to get rid of cookies and fix errors and optimize your hard drive.  (If you don't have Norton, you should probably get it.)  Third, use one or more free anti-spyware programs to make sure there isn't any spyware clogging things up.  

If all that doesn't make it run better, replace it!


P.S. So what's the computer equivalent of a horse stepping on your foot?

sieblonde said...

Mine used to do the same thing.  Hopefully you'll figure it out.  My fix was a new computer... the other one was very very old.  

msecz said...

Loved your entry today.... good comparison if you ask me. Hope the computer was listening. Sandra

sylviam4000 said...

Wish AOL would run away with me. I am on dial up as we cannot yet receive broadband here. Connecting to AOL is a work of art/patience and loading pages is akin to riding a beach donkey. Writing my journal makes me foam at the mouth. keep laughing with me.
Sylvia x

ryanagi said...

So even hitting CTRL-ALT-DEL at the same time doesn't act like the equivalent of smacking the horse on the nose with a riding crop? He may rear a bit, but he usually stops running. ;-)  Sounds like you hit a malicious website that bombards you with browser spam (a program gets launched that opens window upon window upon window), a virus, or AOL is acting up...I get that endless "Your program has encountered an error..." and hitting ok or the red X just give you a new error and that annoying DING and you can't end the program or close it and everything else is frozen...I've been there. Unplug, run a scan disk, defrag, delete temp files and internet cache, and then the PC Checkup tool to repair AOL. Then you work until the next time the error crops up. LOL

valphish said...

Chuck, I laughed so hard with this entry!  It felt good :-).  I don't usually have any problems with my computer, but boy does my Dad.  I sent him a link to this entry.  I am sure he will find this amusing. Take care! xox -Val