The IT Idiot

Posted by Danny

What in the heck is going on?  The tool bar on my computer was lying where it always lies – across the bottom of the screen.  I’m comfortable with that – that’s where I like him.  Yesterday I opened my computer and he had stood up – moved on over to the right side of the computer.  Perhaps he needed to stretch.  I don’t know.  All I do know is that I can’t find anything now.  This is really throwing me off!

Here toolbar, come here boy...

Last week at work, I started printing a pretty important document to be passed out at an important board meeting.  I was the presenter to a room full of fairly influential people.  When I went to pick up my “job” from the printer, I noticed it had a pink tint all over the paper.  I opened the drawer – looks like it started out white.  Maybe our printer was celebrating Valentine’s Day.  I called the IT department in a frenzy.  MY DOCUMENT IS PINK!  I HAVE TO LEAVE FOR A BOARD MEETING IN 15 MINUTES.  IS THIS SOME SORT OF SICK JOKE?  How can a printer all of a sudden decide to shade your documents?  And PINK?  It’s as if Michelle got to pick the toner cartridge for the day.

IT guys ask questions like, “Did you press print from the toolbar?”

First of all, is there anywhere else to press print from?  Do they have a magic button underneath their desk that can print when their tool bar vacates?

I respond with answers like, “Surprisingly (since my tool bar had not yet decided to relocate) I did.”

“Did you…”

“Can you just walk your over here and check this out for yourself?”

Ten minutes later.

“Now press print.  Let’s go see what it looks like.”

“I know what it looks like.  It’s pink!”

I’ll be damned if we didn’t walk to that frickin’ printer and pull out a pure white copy of my handout.  I swear.

“It’s ok.  It happens to us all.”

No it doesn’t.  I know the kind people in that department think I have a -6 IQ.  They are very responsive and very nice to those of us who have a technological dificiency.  But I know they think I’m stupid and I’m convinced they crack on me at their closed-door staff meetings.  They probably do impersonations of us as their ice breakers.

Why is it that every time the IT department comes to work on your computer, the problem  you were encountering just magically disappears?

Lisa was the technician in our house.  I am not technical as Jesse has pointed out on many occasions.  I do not know the difference between upload and download.  I do not know how to get pictures off the camera.  I bought a new printer – and handed the box to Jesse.  I put photo paper in the printer and the computer told me there wasn’t paper in the printer.  I told it there was but that it was just a different kind of paper.  It did not respond to me.  And it didn’t print my pictures.  They look fine on regular paper – you can’t tell the difference once you frame them.

I can’t add a printer, delete a printer, or set a printer as default.  I got a new phone, a Droid.  I recently learned there is a button you can push and look at a map of where you are.  Did you know that you can text with your voice?  I talk to my computer all of the time and nothing happens.  Maybe he’s offended by the curse words.  But with the Droid, I talk and it moves!   The other day Jesse picked up my phone and said, “Red Dragon, Raleigh.”  That phone pulled up the restaurant and there sat the phone number, ready to dial. 

I used to think Lisa was having an affair with a dude she would talk to for hours.  She said she was talking to him trying to  get our wireless working.  I only heard half of the conversation but I’m not convinced that’s what they were talking about.  As their conversation progressed, she would speak louder and slower.  I’m not sure if the phone connection was going bad or if she was trying to role model how she would like him to communicate back with her.  I will say that she always left the conversation cranky. 

I don’t want my kids to be technologically illiterate.  And I am trying to become a bit more savvy with my computer.  Jesse says I don’t need all of the answers in my head, I just need to know where to find the answers.  I do:  the IT department!

Leave a comment


  1. Sylvia Haynes

     /  February 21, 2011

    Glad to hear that I’m not the only one who has a computer that does what it wants, when it wants. The very same things have been happening to me. I don’t like it one bit.

  2. homesteadramblings

     /  February 21, 2011

    My youngest daughter in her last year of college has often told me she’s a digital native while our generation is digtal immigrant. Whatever that means.:)

    • Danny Tanner

       /  February 21, 2011

      It is frightening when your 13 year old knows stuff that you don’t – and in this case, DJ does. I feel like an old fart!

  3. Mom

     /  February 21, 2011

    I can relate. I took my computer to the shop last week and it came back with the calander set in the year 2006. Now that’s where we keep all of our appointments. I always put the appointment on the computer with a week reminder for important ones and less for others. Without this reminder, we don’t get anywhere. No reminders for 2011. I move the calander to 2011 ONE MONTH AT A TIME, which is the only way it will move. Then suddenly the first day of the week changes to Wednesday on the calander. I get out of the program. It goes back to 2006 the next time the computer is cut on. I wait 15 minutes for those reminders to come up every time I cut on the computer. They are annoying but without them we cannot function. As I type this morning, this keyboard has decided not to type. I am sitting here hitting every key on the keyboard trying to get it’s attention. It is not listening. This went on for 10 minutes then it suddenly started working. It does this regularly. It just gets a bee in it’s bonnet and pouts with me. At that time, it just doesn’t do anything. After a while of pouting it stats again. One never knows what kind of mood it will be in when one sits down. In spite of it’s moodiness, I like my computer. Maybe if I will be very respectful of it, it will be easier to live with. (Five times during this writing it has stuck it’s bottom lip out and quit typing. I have had to be very patient to write this comment. My patience is running out and I don’t have an IT department. Maybe I’ll call you for help).

  4. Annette Heath

     /  February 21, 2011

    You mentioned the Red Dragon, a favorite restaurant of mine if there ever was one. I lived in Raleigh for ten years and loved that place among many others. I feel your pain re: computer/printer problems. I am retired now and use a laptop at home. Boy, can I waste a lot of time sitting here. If trouble comes, I call the computer guys and they cometh.

    Danny, I love your blog and you are one terrific guy who WILL know a gradual release from this terrible pain of loss and grief, and find happiness again….promise. Those precious daughters will be with you every step of the journey, and I suspect – so will Lisa. Uncle Jesse is a treasure!

  5. satya

     /  February 21, 2011

    Had me in stitches and I can SO relate to all of this! Anytime I have trouble, I ask my 13 year old son or my 27 year old daughter for their help, that is, once I’ve managed to set off alarms and produce some puffs of smoke from my tiny desk. Somehow, it all works out but mine doesn’t listen to me either (MUST be the cuss words..gotta be!)

  6. Wes

     /  February 21, 2011

    Bruce, I with you on this one. My anti-virus program was not working correctly because my date on the bottom right side of my desktop was wrong. I think I made the top 10 dumbest mistakes of the day in customer service office that day.

    Do not worry, the IT(IS) guys are not the only ones who did funny impressions of you in closed door staff meetings.

  7. Patty Thomson

     /  February 21, 2011

    I have an excuse for swearing at the computer when I can’t figure it out. I AM AN OLD SELF TAUGHT WOMAN. I think I got oall the usual misnomers when you speak of computers!! when we got our first computer, Shortie Herrmann sold us his. he showed Wayne what to do, and I steered clear of it for awhile. then, being a woman, I went into the I CAN mode and learned to work it. then Wayne taught computer programing at FTCC and I thought he could teach me the modern computerese. his idea was to sit at the computer and ask me what I wanted to learn. I am hands on and so I told him nothing!!! then I discovered computereese for Dummies!! It helps a lot because it starts with push the on switch. I knew that already, so figured I knew all I needed to know. now I do it all!! scan, print, all the rest. Oh, by the way, go on and swear at it, if it can’t print in anything but pink, it would not dare tell your mama!! thanks for the laughs when I needed them!! love you

  8. skyddsdrake

     /  February 21, 2011

    My husband actually works in an IT department. We hang out with all the guys he works with. Oddly enough, the only people who get laughed at behind closed doors are the ones who are mean to the guys. They understand your frustration. And they don’t think you’re stupid. People who call for help are the reason they have jobs. 😉

    • Danny Tanner

       /  February 21, 2011

      I’m glad to know from someone on the inside that they don’t all think we’re stupid! I really like our IT guys – but they have to get frustrated with me!

  9. Renee Ward

     /  February 21, 2011

    No “computer feel good talk” from me. Once you get this stuf figured out, I am still waiting for some December FL pictures. Think they are trapped on your camera??!? I can send Anderson over for tech support if needed! :0)

  10. I remember teaching my older boys about computers, now they tell and show me! I’ve gotten dumberer?! They say at least I can install an OS, a what?, oh that, now I know. 🙂
    I did set up my blog by myself! Okay, my cousin did give me some tips afterwards that I did.
    Today I couldn’t open a password protected word doc. I have previously! What’s the problem here? I download all these updates it still won’t open! Solution after an hour or so and trying on three computers…don’t capitalize the first letter…it opened! Arrrgh!!


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