Wednesday, February 3, 2021

Post 3934 - Wednesday Night Stuff

Well, here we are, the third day in the row of the blog's return. How much will you pay now?

I didn't do much today, which follows another day of not doing much. Yet, here I am, around 10:30, and I am pooped. I will probably turn in at 11. 

Tomorrow, we have a few plans, which include actually leaving the house for the first time in a few days. This may not strike you as particularly interesting, but means quite a bit to us. We have become homebodies in a way that an anthropologist or sociologist might find quite interesting. As I have previously noted, we do not really want for anything materially. We are not bragging, at least not on purpose. We are just noting that there is not much we really need.

There are, however, a few things we want. In my own case, the laptop I am typing these humble, sub-par words on, is starting to act up. A few of the keys work sporadically, and then don't work at all. I can activate a virtual keyboard if I need to reach a letter or character that the physical keyboard is too obstinate to provide, but other times the keyboard is working perfectly, like now. The keys that were giving me trouble a few days ago seem to be fine now. I do not have an explanation for why.

I have priced newer laptops. I can go on Facebook marketplace and get one for $250 or less. I can go get a cheapo laptop at Staples for $350 or so, but there is something about a business-class computer which I find very comforting. The non-business class computers are not very robust, sometimes falling apart if you look at them sideways. I got a business class all-in-one just before New Year's, and it is a joy to use and accommodates the 30+ year old model m keyboard via a legacy ps/2 connection in the back. 

There are computer stores in town that sell refurbished, off-lease business-class machines, but even the off-lease ones are upwards of $800 taxes in, and I am not wild about spending that much. That is why, as a stopgap, I have ordered a compatible replacement keyboard for my laptop in the home that if it really does go the way of the dodo, I can install this replacement one. 

I also want to get around finally to getting a newer media server. The one I have had for several years no longer has the power to stream content to the tv's in the house. It also doubled as a print server, and it can still do that, but I want this new one to do both. 

Everything seems to break down all at once, eh?

I have always had a problem with the word "refurbished". It is supposed to be a sign of something being as good as new, no big deal, yay for you, and it's cheaper than the corresponding brand-new thingy you're too cheap to buy in the first place. But like the Scoville level to measure the relative heat of hot sauces, "refurbished" doesn't always point to much of anything, or denote any kind of quality.

I have sometimes purchased something that has undergone the "refurbishment" process and regretted the decision. For example, one time, many years ago, I bought a refurbished car battery. The garage I bought it from guaranteed it and said it was as good as a new one. I drove home to my parents' place with it installed and the car kept trying to stall on the highway. I could, I suppose, have been killed if the car had conked out whilst driving 100km/h. I returned the battery and got my money back and bought a brand-new battery and did not die on the next highway ride home. I have never tried to skimp on a car battery ever since.

I have only ever bought two brand-new computers in my life. Otherwise, I buy them used from some dude on kijiji, or refurbished ones from a reputable vendor. Only once have I bought a computer that almost-literally melted down on me after I bought it. I was ticked off, and naturally never did business with that guy again. The pendulum swings both ways when it comes to things being refurbished. You can get something good, or something not so good.

I will in the coming weeks install that new keyboard and hope that it means I can keep this laptop going a while longer. I will then get some kind of newer media and print server. And all the while, I will get weird over the word "refurbished" the way some people get weird over the word "moist". I will wonder if the used computer I get will last me for any period of time or crap out 2 days after the warranty expires.

I am a very strange person.

But I am your person.

See you tomorrow.



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