Wednesday 11 November 2009

Mac fatigue

It's been a long day; I was awake at 5 a.m. and got up to have a little look at my new Best Toy.

Here it is, in the pre-dawn gloom, next to its ousted and usurped predecessor, the one with all the cat nose marks and paw prints on its little screen. I drooled adoringly onto the desk for a while, and then I sent an email to insomniac friend Shelagh, congratulated myself, and had a bit of a play about with the the bouncy little icons and the strange new language that is Apple-speak.

The playing about lasted pretty much all day. So far I have managed to move all my emails onto the new computer - bad move, that; I should have deleted many thousands of them beforehand, but I forgot that Google keeps everything - and backed up all my wobbly wonky photographs on my external hard drive, planning to transfer them another time.I don't want to frighten this beautiful thing by showing it just how much drossy material it will have to deal with for the rest of its life.

I only needed to make one brief call to the Lovely Son for advice. Neither of us shouted or cried, but there are lots of new-fangled things that I'm struggling to understand, and I suspect that exasperation and despair may feature in the coming days.

I took a picture of myself (don't be frightened, I've deleted it) with the built in camera. I see that I peer anxiously at the screen as though I was taking a surprise exam in an unfamiliar subject, and that my old specs are too wide for my face, my chins too numerous for my self-esteem, and my neck is horridly aged. I know few of us look their best at the crack of dawn and in an unalluring M & S fleece dressing gown, but perhaps I won't be Skyping too freely in future without giving some attention to lighting and high-necked sweaters first.

The hours flew by. The dog didn't harass me for a walk, and when I went out with her, I found out why. Despite a reasonably bright sky, the great outdoors was unpleasantly raw. The dog had her thick knitted coat on, yet she still ran away from me when she realised this would be a proper walk. She can make it very clear that she isn't a dog for walks in cold, damp, wet, windy - or indeed hot, dry, windy - weather. She was marched home in disgrace, not for wanting to cut short a forced march, but for running into the road several times in her attempts to sidle away without my noticing. Secretly, I shared her relief to get back indoors and to creep guiltily back to the Best Toy.

On the way home, we saw Millie on a back yard wall. She was studying the sky with interest; perhaps her latest interest is cloud-formation, vapour trails, or UFO-spotting. As she could see that we were on our way home, and not en route to the grassy area where two enormous crows offer entertainment to silly young cats, she was reluctant to come down and join us.

Scooter, who never ventures outdoors, preferring to protect his reputation as the Most Timid Kitten Ever, spent a lovely afternoon playing with the big white box that had come with the Best Toy. He thinks Apple does a very superior line in cardboard packaging, and finds endless amusement in its simplicity; exasperation and despair are for silly, impatient, over-ambitious humans.


SmitoniusAndSonata said...

It's nice to know that Millie obviously has her mind on higher things .
I , on the other hand , am feeling very envious of your new toy and your ability to understand it .

Fran Hill said...

I don't know what it is about computers but they gobble up time. It sounds fun, though, although 5am might be a tad too early for me....

Bee said...

I love all of the rich description in this one! So many phrases made me smile with pleasure and/or recognition.

p.s. When did you get the new header? That little dog looks gloriously exhilerated.

Sweet Virginia Breeze said...

Have fun with your new Best Toy!

BumbleVee said...

talk to me Rachel !

I just got a new Mac too... and am having problems with my photos now ... on the blog. They won't get larger when clicked. IS there a trick to that? Do you upload them all first and then stick in your text where you want it or do you drag them around? do you load them one at a time as some people have suggested might work>? yours still all seem to get larger when clicked.... what have I done differently to make problems for myself> ?

I've discovered that I have 6,000 photos to sort through and purge...acckkkk!!!

rachel said...

Hmm, I wouldn't be so sure of the "understanding it" part.... adding photos is straightforward if very slow, but moving them inside the post without using the so-called new and improved (horrible) Blogger is impossible, and I haven't found out how to cut and paste a picture without doing so in HTML! I forgot to check if they got bigger when clicked, but couldn't tell you why they do (or don't).

So you see where the time goes, and how much I have to learn!

rachel said...

And yes, she was full of the joys of Spring when that photo was taken a few years ago, but sadly, she's still only on 3 legs for much of the time now, and not so lively.

mountainear said...

Can't help about enlarging blog pictures in someones blog (for a special nosey look...) They mostly do for me - opening up in a new page when I click on one.

Re doing things to pictures when writing a blog - you should be able to cut and paste without going into html mode. ie. click on the picture so it's 'live' (has a little box with squares on the edge if you see what I mean). If using a Mac hold down the Apple key and 'c' for copy. go to where you want it to be and 'apple + v' = paste. Go back and press Delete or Apple + x to get rid of the one you copied. Get it horribly wrong and Apple + Z = undo. Can't help much with a PC but the principle is the same. You can also drag the highlighted image around and put it down where you want it to go in the text but depending on the length of your piece it's often easier to cut and paste. I tend to upload multiples and move them around afterwards. It's a shame that the blogger writing screen is so small.

Gosh that was a boring tutorial. Enjoy that Mac.

love those cupcakes said...

Sounds like you're playing nicely though it's good that you have your technical adviser to hand. Oh yes, and I know numerous suppliers of polo neck sweaters(which I'd wear all year if I could).

Anonymous said...

Well - I am dead impressed, really, and it looks so good too. For sure, who cares if the roof leaks ;-) As always I love your humour and glimpses into the animal kingdom in which you're permitted room. Scooter reminds me a little of my Frankie, he's timid too and rarely goes outside unless he has an escort or encouragement from the rear, and then he'll reappear through the catflap as if his tail's on fire if so much as a leaf rustles.

Charlotte said...

If you need any Mac help let me know I might be able to help x

rachel said...

Not a boring tutorial at all, Mountainear. But my photos wouldn't go live to be manipulated. Reassuring to know that I'm not alone in learning as I go along - tutorials and advice always welcome! Thanks.

The Technical Advisor is hundreds of miles away, thankfully, otherwise he'd be constantly tinkering with it and I'd never understand what he'd just changed/downloaded/uploaded/got rid of because his dim mother wouldn't ever use it....

Susan said...

Gasp ! Millie avec golden sunlight and cloud studies xo Oliver

Yes the big beautiful Mac - welcome to the world of easy, sensible, virus free, DVD playing, itunes, iphoto LOVE

Have been reading and catching up with your blog here and there when I have a moment away from the man of my dreams.

the dog looks very put upon

Love from Us !

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