Humor: This Valentine's Day – My love-hate relationship with my computer

I am not, by any stretch of the imagination, a wiz when it comes to using a computer. I know enough to get on the Internet, send and retrieve e-mail and put the front page of this newspaper together. Unlike your typical pre-adolescent computer genius who spends most of his free time in front of the p.c. – instead of the television, where he should be – I can’t hack into NORAD and launch a tactical nuclear strike at, say, Martha Stewart’s home.
Of course, my computer is an invaluable piece of hardware in that I don’t have to use an antiquated device known as a “typewriter” or write by hand, which is what people in prehistoric times did before the advent of e-mail.
Rather, it’s the little things that frustrate me. For example, every now and again, my computer shows me this message while I’m on the Internet: “This program has performed an illegal operation and will be shut down.” At this point, my computer rudely kicks me off the Internet. What “illegal operation” is being referred to? Is my computer robbing a liquor store or shredding incriminating documents at Enron?
My computer also occasionally freezes like a deer caught in the headlights of an oncoming car for no apparent reason, rendering all keystrokes and mouse movements useless. When I shut down the computer and turn it back on, I get a stern text lecture about not shutting down the computer properly! Personally, I think my computer needs to see a therapist, because blaming me for its problems can’t be healthy.
I don’t know if computers ever unfreeze on their own, because when I tried to wait out my computer at home one time, my clothes went out of style and my car drastically depreciated in value, so I ended up turning off the computer and resuming my life.
Late last year, following Sound Publishing’s switch of Web site providers, I finally learned how to set up and maintain this newspaper’s (WARNING: SHAMELESS PLUG COMING UP) Web site at:, which is something I never thought I would be able to do.
I attribute this to the instruction booklet I feverishly referred to often and Sound Publishing’s resident tech guru, who probably thinks I’m functionally retarded after having to walk me through the process about a million times.
If a computer-frustrated guy like myself can enjoy some success, there’s hope for anyone. But if I ever become a computer genius, Martha Stewart better watch out.