It all started on Tuesday when I got a phone message. It was cryptic. The Murph said he couldn’t understand the caller because he was Indian. It was from Dell Computer. I haven’t used my Dell computer since it became infected with a virus that couldn’t be extracted with dynamite. I avoided the call. On Thursday the karmic hammer slammed down. I was watching the news and planning on crosswords and early bedtime. The phone rang and for some inexplicable reason I picked up. I hate the phone. Too many hours wasted with telemarketers and relatives who don’t know how to wrap up a conversation. It was Dell. The caller was checking on the status of my computer. I told him. He listened and commiserated. He told me things I already knew. He did some research and told me that Best Buy, where I bought the computer installed Windows 7 and that I should check with them. When I hung up I went on-line got the number and called. All I needed was Windows 7 on a disk. I talked to a “friendly” rep who insisted that all they had was Windows 8. She was very insistent about this. It is at this point I lost all intelligence and went on-line to look up Microsoft. A side note: I’ve got the number in my phone book but my brain didn’t remember. I picked a Microsoft number and got a computer repair team, not the desired company. I talked to techies who promised to fix my problem. I downloaded Windows 7 onto a flash drive but due to the fact Windows wasn’t factory installed there was no option to download W& from a flash drive. The tech shifted me around and they finally decided that what I really, really needed was blank DVDs. Okay, I was going to Target to pick up a new phone as the one that I bought eleven years ago at Walgreens for $9 was giving me feedback and yeah, I was heading that way. Target had the phone, but blank DVDs they carried were for people who wanted to copy entire television series, the Matrix trilogy, War and Peace and still have fifty or so DVDs left over. I needed one. I went into the belly of the beast, Best Buy. I arrived one minute before they opened and was out five minutes later with phone and ten DVDs in hand. I was a tad pissed because I wanted to have a chat with the service manager and maybe offer some hints on how sales reps should respond to callers. And I forgot to ask if the Geek Squad could install Windows 7. At one pm the tech called and I downloaded Windows 7 onto the disk. It took about an hour. I had handed my primary laptop over to the techs and they typed me messages. I sat and stared at them, slowly descending into a place where my soul turns black as coal and as hard as diamonds. By three pm I wanted to talk to anybody who would explain what the hell was going on. BY four I wanted my computer back and the techs off my phone. At six I got promises that they would try to repair my problem. Here is my censored response: “You have wasted my time and money. You have told me that you will make me very happy by the time you are done. I have spent extended periods of time staring at two inoperative computers. I have other options that I will take. I am prepared to write you off as a bad debt and stupid mistake on my part. Your problem as I see it is you are trying too hard, everyone is looking for a solution. No one has stepped back and looked at the problem and seriously thought out a solution. I firmly believe that your employers hired you to fill spaces and didn’t check qualifications. I will write about it. I will mention your company’s name so no one else who is looking for help falls into your trap.” Now, I’ve spent time in the military, taken English and Literature courses and have read some of the trashier books, been a fan of Carlin, Pryor, Bruce, Burroughs so you can insert any f-bombs, s-bombs, mf-bombs and some really creative stuff that I used. I was fed up with people telling me to restart my computer and tap f2, f11, f12, or Crtl+Alt. They had no clue. I could have intuited myself to the position the computer is in now. If you have problems with your computer, and it’s out of warranty call some local repair shops, or get recommendations. If that isn’t feasible look up the company on-line. You’ll probably get a number for customer service and they’ll direct you. You might have to have a good friend who’ll let you look it up. Don’t do what I did, buy a computer and a Computers for Dummies book and sail on. I took an on-line course for Windows 8 but I already knew what they had to tell me. The didn’t tell me how to stop that damned Charms Bar from popping up every time I got near the right side of the screen. Wrapping up on computers, calling Dell as I have W7 on disk and drive, if they can’t help it goes into the shop or gets sold to the go-to guy in South Windsor. Also a call to Microsoft to fix a problem I have moving documents on W8.

Okay Food TV, not just the network but Man vs. Food on Travel Channel, Bizarre Foods America and all of those shows that glamorize stuffing your face in the questionable “sport” of competitive eating. We all know about the hot dog eating contest on July 4th. Adam Richman was the worst, he travelled the country hunting up five pound Philly cheese steak sandwiches, hub cap sized pancakes, five pound omelets and trying to eat them in an allotted time. Andrew Zimern eats bizarre foods like chicken lungs in foreign countries where they are part of the diet because nothing is wasted. Somebody thought putting them on TV would be a good idea. The Food Network isn’t about food but contests. Like baking 1,000 cupcakes and doing it in a circus theme. There’s a food talk show. I like food, maybe too much but enough is enough. Let’s bring cooking back to PBS. Julia Child did well there and we could get all those pesky public affairs programs off.

A woman named her son Messiah. A judge changed it to Martin. We have a First Amendment fight brewing. Every extremist from the right and left are spoiling for a piece of the action. The right wants to wrap itself in religious goodness and light and the left is fighting for the right to do whatever you want s long as you don’t upset the status quo. 762 boys in America are named Messiah every year. The judge says it’s a title conferred on some guy named Jesus. What about Prince Michael Jackson and his similarly named brother. We’re not supposed to have royalty. The mother didn’t have any religious reason for the name, it just sounded nice along with his siblings names. Personally, I think parents should be allowed to name their offspring anything they want. If the name is weird enough the kid will be teased from kindergarten to high school graduation. If they survive and haven’t killed anyone college and/or work looms. If they survive and they’re smart they’ll change their name or become a megalomaniac. Or they’ll go back and kill their parents. I don’t recommend or condone that.

Woodstock ended today in 1969. What happened people?

Today’s birthdays: Roberto Clemente,1934, great ballplayer and humanitarian; Antonio Saleri,1750,a good composer but it took a movie to make him a villain; Virginia Dare,1587, the first white child born in America.

A note the tech service I called is You’ve been warned.

See you in the funnies.