I remember when we computer users were sternly enjoined never to turn off our computers. The hard drive would fail eventually, we were told, and frequent restarting of the machine would only hasten that unhappy day.
Then Windows 98 came along and we were obliged to restart our computers six or seven times a day. Usually when we could least afford it.
Lately we are told that we should turn off our machines every night. Leaving the machine on wastes power and contributes to (*cue scary music*) Global Warming!
Al Gore forgive me... but I don't do this.
The darn thing takes way too long to start up again. A young man who works for one of the other lawyers in our suite cleaned out my start menu... after he stopped laughing at me... and that sped things up... but only a little.
Still, I want to be ecologically responsible. Last Friday afternoon I thought, since a three day weekend was at hand, it would be appropriate to turn everything off.
And I did.
And this morning... I tried to turn it all back on again.
I had an almost immediate message from the most paranoid corporation in America: Mr. Gates was apparently concerned that, over the long weekend, I might have offloaded my legal copy of Windows and installed some bootleg bought in a back alley.
As if the real stuff isn't unreliable enough.
But one messes with Mr. Gates at one's peril... so even though I well knew that the promises of the 'genuine advantages' sure to flow from 'validating' my copy of Windows were pure bovine excrement, I clicked on the option to download and install.
And then I began waiting.
Another program apparently tried to start up before Mr. Gates had finished inspecting all of the nooks and crannies of my hard drive. That program got locked in a fatal duel with Mr. Gates' validation program... and both crashed. My computer was left in start-up limbo, neither up and running nor shut down. And, unfortunately, I depend on this stupid machine to do just about everything... including this.
A couple of reboots later... we're up and hobbling. But my attitude is as bad as ever....