Tuesday morning Mike starts up Mackenzie. She’s our MAC; we like to name all our favorite inanimate objects. Belle (the car – berry colored), Katie (Keurig), and I don’t care about Mike’s pillow but her name is Cassandra. So Mike starts up Mackenzie and she is going to a white screen with a little folder in the center and a flashing question mark. This can’t be good.
While Mike is at work Wednesday, I call Apple to see if they can fix it over the phone for $49. Of course, they need my credit card information first. I give them Mike’s, and the guy can’t fix it. He says if I have some start-up disc that came with the computer I can call him back and he might still be able to fix it. If I don’t have the disc, they’ll refund my money. Here’s the problem with these phone calls. There’s no shot in hell that when I call back, I’m going to get the same guy. So I text Mike, can’t find the disc, and call back. Stupid girl answers and I explain exactly what the guy just told me – I don’t have the disc so I’d like my money back. “It says here that they did some trouble shooting on your computer so you will be charged the $49.” 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10. No, they didn’t do any trouble shooting. They asked me to start my computer and it went to a blue screen. I didn’t need your help to do that. I’m telling you the guy I just spoke to – Mike – said I will get my money back if I didn’t have the disc. It’s like she isn’t even listening to what I’m saying. I’m getting hot. OK, transfer me to Mike then (I know she can’t do this). “I can’t transfer you to him.” OK, then put your manager on please. I’d like to speak with someone else. She finally puts me on hold. I’m seething as I wait, thinking of what I’m going to say next when another asshole tells me I’m being charged for Apple telling me to turn on my computer. A guy finally comes on. “Hello. It shows that all you did was start you’re computer so we’ll be refunding your money.” Thank you, sane person. I am so sick of calling 800 numbers and dealing with jerks.
I already scheduled an appointment with Apple at 10:30, so I pack up Mackenzie and head over. God, she’s heavy. I lug her into the store and it’s like I just stepped into the future. White everything, computers everywhere, and about 30 employees walking around in blue polos, wearing headphones and carrying around their own personal iPads. Someone immediately comes up to me and grabs the box out of my hand. I follow him to the back of the store. He puts my computer behind a desk and directs me to another guy. I tell him my name and he immediately finds me on his list. Someone will be right with me.
While I’m waiting I check out the ipod situation because I really need one. I didn’t want to give in because I was hoping it would turn up at Lilly’s and whoever stole it would give it back. Not happening. It had a good life. It’s the only ipod I’ve ever had. Mom got it for me for Christmas years ago and inscribed my name on the back with a quote underneath: “All the world’s a stage.” Last year in Hoboken, I was riding my bike home from the gym and stupidly kept my headphones on. As I was crossing the street, my ipod fell out of my pocket into the street. I got to the other side and immediately stopped and went to run back in the street. A car was coming, so I just screamed, noooo! A guy was walking by and got scared that someone was in the street. No, sorry, it’s just my ipod. And it wasn’t just one car. I stared helplessly as five cars rolled directly over my ipod, tire after tire. When it was over, I picked it up. The lock was a little messed up, but the music was playing just fine. My ipod was alive.
But now Mackenzie is dead. Keven-Bobby – that’s what his name tag says – walks over and introduces himself to me. We walk over to take a look at the computer, and I get immediately embarrassed as he retrieves it out of the box. First of all, it’s the same box it came in five years ago, with holes in it and duck tape to keep it shut, and that isn’t even the embarrassing part. Inside, there is only one side with the little Styrofoam to keep it in place, so to keep the other side in place, is a ratty, dirty old pillow. He probably doesn’t even what to touch it. Oh my god, I am so embarrassed right now. “It’s OK, a pillow works.” I should have thought about an alternative before I walked into the store.
Keven tries a couple things and comes to a quick conclusion. “Your hard drive is shot. You need a new one.” Can I recover everything on the hard drive? “Maybe, but we don’t do that here.” He proceeds to tell me how much everything will cost. I relay the conversation to Mike, and finally decide to take Mackenzie somewhere else to see if we can recover everything first. I drive across town to Best Buy and wait in line at the Geek Squad. He doesn’t even need to look at the computer (I’m so happy I carried it in). They will have to send it away for up to two weeks. The base price is 250, but depending on what they have to do, it can go up to 500. If it’s still not recovered after that, it can cost up to $1,400, and that’s all without a guarantee that they can even recover it. OK, goodbye.
Back to Apple. Take Mackenzie. Replace the hard drive, but can I have the old one now? “No, we can’t give it to you now. You can have it when you pick your computer up in about five days.” OK, FINE. I am so done with this. It’s been four hours of running around and people just telling me I’ll have to spend more and more money to fix our computer. I still have to write. Dammit, all my pictures are on Mackenzie. I start writing on my Dell laptop and have never been more thankful to have her (she is now a her, because now she is worthy of a name; Mike named her Delilah in the past hour). I try dragging a picture to the desktop and it doesn’t work. Oh, curse you, PC!
I need to decompress. I need to go to the beach (I will always have a reason for this need). I’m trying to read my book, when this guy interrupts me. Well, not me, but the girls laying out next to me. Apparently, he’s from London, because he’s got a thick accent. “Excuse me, I’m sorry to interrupt your sunbathing, but would you mind watching my stuff for a minute? I need to get some water for my dog.” She very nicely tells him yes, because everyone in Venice is nice. When he walks away, another guy nearby decides to put in his two cents. “Hope it’s not a bomb.” I turn around to see what the guy left on the beach – a bunch of duffel bags. This was a really dumb comment, but now I’m scared. That’s not funny, why would you say that. He’s laughing. I easily decide he’s a tool bag. London walks back, and him and Tool Bag start talking. They have a friendly and weird conversation. They both keep saying off-the-wall things, and the other keeps immediately responding. They are both trying to talk about themselves and it’s annoying. Actually, London isn’t that annoying because I like his accent. And his dog is super cute. I can’t help but listen to their dumb conversation. Tool Bag conveniently finds the appropriate time to plug his company – designer or some shit – and spew off his website. London is a musician, but also a paranormal investigator? So weird. He’s talking about ghosts and how he lights candles in condemned places and plays Michael Jackson to get the ghosts to communicate with him. So weird. I just like looking at his dog.
He’s a little black wiry mutt and very well behaved. He’s calmly standing on all fours, looking at his surroundings. People keep walking by and he pays them no mind. Then I hear him bark loudly at two guys walking by. Hmm, he didn’t seem to mind anyone else. I notice other people walking by and again, it’s like the dog doesn’t even see them. Another person, who isn’t even near him, walks by and again, he’s barking. I’m finding this very interesting. I decide he’s a smart dog. Not just smart, but wise, because he looks like he’s got some gray hair on his nose. I tell London his dog is really cute and he quickly starts chatting it up with me. “His name is Tramp.” Love. He does look like Tramp – except black, and not a cartoon. I tell him my observations and he says Tramp helps him with his paranormal investigations. Uh huh, sure. He lets Tramp come over to me and I hope he doesn’t bark at me. I don’t know if I believe in a dog knowing if you’re a good person or whatever, but they do seem to have a sixth sense. He’s a very stoic dog, so I’m surprised when he opens his mouth and playfully bites my hand, then lays his head in my palm. Oh my god, he’s so cute. And he doesn’t think I’m evil. Some cops kick London off the beach – because dogs aren’t allowed on the beach – and I’m sad to see Tramp go. He just made me feel better about this whole day.