INSTRUMENTAL LOVE (04 min read)

Via: Daily Prompt – Seriousness

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Image: Zaireen Lupa

I’ve been using my laptop since January 2011. Upon becoming a corporate lady, it was the first piece of machinery I had bought by saving up paycheck by paycheck. I had put in almost a year’s wait while searching for the ideal laptop and, once I found it, for it to receive its tech reviews. I had a friend bring it in from Singapore and it has been my companion these six years.

Oh, Dell Studio XPS 1647, how I love you!

It hasn’t been the smoothest of relationships. Immediately, it started showing speed adjustment issues. If I would even turn on Google Chrome while running my media player, it would throttle for a few seconds. Of course, I was not tech-savvy or laptop-savvy enough at the time to get what was happening. I would hear the sound break, get stuck, and panic until it went away. I looked it up online but not knowing what keywords to search for, I didn’t find any solution. I comforted myself that it was just a temporary break in time so it should be fine. It wasn’t. 

Six months down the line, other things started showing issues. The DVD slot, for example, stopped spitting back out my DVDs despite that the cool Eject tab on the media hotkeys still lit up like fireworks if I pressed it. So I stopped using DVDs. There is always Netflix anyways. Except that soon after other tabs on the hotkey started malfunctioning too. But now I was at the end of my service warranty to do anything about it.

The touchpad went next. Some time after this, the throttling got worse and worse. It started taking longer to adjust power to run multiple applications simultaneously. Add to that, the heat dissipation no longer seemed to be working. My poor fan has taken the biggest hit and it is still supporting me through. To bolster it, I bought a cooling pad, then another, and another. I never got around to procuring that gel, unfortunately. Instead, I have been cleaning out the insides, blowing out the dust. Poor thing.

Finally, a few weeks ago the sign popped up on my screen informing me that my battery has reached the end of its life. What do I do? What do I do? I have been searching for a battery replacement since. My model has long become obsolete, and therefore, the battery is no longer available in the Asia Pacific. A number of times, the machine refused to boot beyond the Dell XPS screen, i.e. it wouldn’t power up Windows. Turns out residual power was stuck in the battery. So I removed the battery and put it back on with some success. Until last week, when I had to remove the battery altogether to keep that tricky hotkey pad from malfunctioning and throttling the entire system into automatic shutdown.

I’ve since got a few local vendors to procure the battery from overseas. Contact Dell, call in the brigades! You might wonder why I am refusing to lose this battle. Because it’s been like a pet to me; it has a mind of its own and possesses an irritable temperament, but it has been instrumental in coalescing my thoughts and putting it out there. I know it to every scratch, the dust beneath the keyboard, the inch of hot wax I dropped on its lower left corner that I have since been able to meticulously rub away to a quart of a centimeter, the fact that of its three labels – Windows 7, Intel Core i5, and Energy Star – Energy Star started peeling, ironically, within the first couple of months (that should’ve warned me). Latest of its aesthetic loss has been the tiny peel on the point of the ‘N’ on the N-key that has been distracting me. But you don’t just replace your love for a newer model!

I had big dreams for my Merlot Red, leather inlaid, edge-to-edge HD 1080 Trulife display, configured to the skin of its teeth equipment, most of which it has been fulfilling even while putting up a fight. But which relationship is without its ups and downs? I got my movies watched, music listened to, MBA completed, research done, blog started and stories written on it, didn’t I? I started and completed writing my first novel on it, didn’t I?

And there lies the hook. I have developed a superstition about this machine apart from my sheer fondness for its beauty. It’s where I have been writing. I might verily be afraid to move on to another machine. My fingers move over these keys before my conscious mind commands it. What if my subconscious doesn’t mesh as well with the next laptop? No, I don’t think I can lay it to rest yet; not until the last stone is turned.

Are you or have you ever been this loyal to a machine/equipment??

Do let me know and reassure me if I’m not alone and insane.

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