Thursday, March 18, 2010
Blogging for Dummies
Inspired by my recent foray into the wonderful world of blogging, I decided maybe it was time I learned something about what I was doing. Not that not knowing what I was doing has ever stopped me before, nor should it stop you. Here is a clue for you kids out there: No one knows what they are doing. This is a reassuring thought when you start you first job, but not so much when you are having open-heart surgery. The key to success is not knowing what you are doing and doing it anyway. Just dive right in there and slog it out like everybody else. That's the truth, kids: Nobody knows what they are doing. Still, thinking about my blog, if I knew something about blogging it might keep me away from things like copyright infringement and being sued for libel.
At first, I sought this information online but some of those techno-geeks out there are really bitter people. Look: I was a big, damn dork in high school too, but I suck at computers, so I have a double whammy against me. Just because I have a learned a few social skills in adulthood and stopped wearing overalls and tie-dyed t-shirts as formal wear, it doesn't mean I am one of those jerks who oppressed your ass in P.E. I, too, was the oppressed. Hell, I was in choir AND theatre. Just because I don't understand computers like you do, it doesn't mean I am not one of you. If we had "Dungeons and Dragons" in high school, I probably would have played right along with you. However, when I was in high school when Nixon was still in office and people thought they were hot stuff if they had a pocket calculator. So just give me a break, you bitter, bitter dorks.
Book-junkie that I am, I decided that a book on blogging may answer some of my questions. My husband got me a Sony Reader for Christmas, and despite being a bit of a techno-phobe, I think that thing is the bomb. I can get books without having to leave the house. It was easy to download books, and I'd already downloaded quite a few. Plus, Captain Piccard had something like it on "Star Trek: The Next Generation". (See, I'm talking "Star Trek" here, you techno-geeks. I may suck at the techno part, but the geek stuff I know.) The most obvious book choice for me seemed to be: "Blogging for Dummies". I ordered it, paid for it, but was unable to download it. After fooling with the thing for the better part of an hour, I called the Reader Store helpline. Helpline Jose told me that the problem was on their end, but since it was Saturday, they probably wouldn't be able to solve my problem until Monday. I should expect an email from them by then.
Of course, Monday came and went with no email. Ditto Tuesday. I put it off until Wednesday, and decided to contact their live support via computer. Juan didn't seem to believe that Jose had already told me that the problem was on their end. He started asking me all these questions about my operating system and was I using Adobe to run my software. Huh? Are you kidding me? If I knew about those things why the hell would I call their helpline? You think I like talking to some nerd boy who is STILL bitter because he couldn't get laid in high school? If I knew what I was doing, I'd fix the damn thing myself, O.K.? Then Juan wanted to know the author of the book I was trying to purchase. As if they don't have that information on their end. I gave him the title, in part because I thought he needed to get a clue about who he was dealing with: "Blogging for Dummies" I replied. He snarked back: "It's just called "Blogging". Don't even TRY telling me he didn't already know the author's name. After a gazillion questions, Juan still refused to believe that Helpful Jose told me that the problem was on their end, I suspiciously lost my connection to Juan.
Maybe it was because I was on day three of my diet, but I was hungry, felt meaner than a snake and was ready to rumble. I may not know jack about computers, but I can type and type fast. What I lack in accuracy, I make up for in speed. (Take-that, nerd boys!) So, I logged back onto the help window with my real name --Jessica "Bunny" Glitter-Spank -- and get this on the screen: Juan has just left the room. Catherine has just left the room. Jose has just left the room. Techno-geeks were dropping out of that chat room like flies. Finally I get Bernard. Bernard, it seems, has some real emotional baggage. Granted going through high school with the name "Bernard" (As in "Saint" -- tee-he-he!) had to be a real bitch, but that Bernard had some real attitude. "Look here, Bernard," I typed, "Don't ask me a bunch of questions I have already answered. Helpful Jose told me the problem is on YOUR end". What followed was an exchange that had Bernard sarcastically typing: "You are using Windows, aren't you?" Somehow, I once again lost my connection.
By this time I had been dealing with this problem for an hour and a half. I was mean, hungry, night had fallen and "American Idol", the results show, would be on in a half-an-hour. I desperately needed to see someone have their dream crushed. I logged back on. This time I got Catherine. Look-out! Girl in the chat room! After making the mistake of asking me the title of the damn book, I informed Catherine it might be wise if she just reviewed the transcripts of my conversations with Juan and Bernard. There was a long pause. This Catherine, I could tell, was no dummy. Finally she asked that I try downloading a free book. No problem there. Guess what? The problem was on their end. Hello????? Seems there was a little snafu on their end with that particular book. The purchase was credited to my account. As I logged-off the help window, a little survey popped-up asking me about their customer service. Pity it was multiple choice and not an essay.