In our rare experiences with Freecycle Columbus, we usually have come away quite satisfied. The exception is the printer I obtained last month from a woman on Alden Ave. I was quite glad to have it when I brought it home–a handsome Dell Photo 324 which doubled as a photocopier and a scanner.
Except for one little problem. Its LED screen constantly flashed "Paper Jam," even though there was no paper in it. I posted a plea on Facebook for advice, and the replies varied from "Hit the RESET button" (which it didn’t have) to "Take a hammer to it," which became more tempting by the hour.
Steph bought me a new printer Friday at MicroCenter, when she and Susie also came home with the Wii. I now own an HP Deskjet F4480.
When I summon the energy, I’ll take the Dell out to the trash can in the back and dump it in, and I will derive great satisfaction from the "Thud!" it will make.
The reason why this is blogworthy is because I have an aversion to throwing out equipment, no matter how little I used it.
In this office, for instance, I have the two manual typewriters I’ve written about before, the Royal Royalite and the Smith-Corona Galaxie XII. Both still work, so I can rationalize that. It’s easier to justify when I conveniently leave out the fact that I haven’t done any worthwhile writing with them (or any other writing instrument) for weeks.
There is also a key-wound Westclox Baby Ben alarm clock I bought for Susie in August at a Goodwill. It keeps time, but the alarm doesn’t work. Sometimes I remember to wind it. This clock is in a room where I have a digital clock here on the desk, there is a time display at the bottom of my computer monitor, and I can look at either my watch or my cell phone if I need to know the time.
I’m not quite like the little old lady who dies one night, and then they find 30 years’ worth of newspapers in her house.
Steph’s classic example of my inability to let go of equipment is my (now departed) Wollensak reel-to-reel tape recorder. I bought it in Cincinnati from a neighbor desperate for beer money one night. It was of limited use without a microphone, and in those pre-Internet and pre-eBay days, finding a microphone would have been a very tedious and drawn-out experience. I bought some commercially produced reel-to-reel tapes at a library discard sale, and found a problem. The tapes were recorded on four-track equipment, and my machine was a mono two-track. When I played side one, side two would play backwards at the same time.
Despite all this, the Wollensak came with me to Columbus. I never hauled it out to use, and I never broke the seal on the one box of blank reel-to-reel tape I bought for it at Radio Shack. Finally, at Steph’s insistence, I left it behind during one of our moves from one apartment to another.
A friend of our’s son had a similar situation when they moved. He was about 15 when his parents divorced, and his mother was in the process of selling the house so she could move in with her boyfriend. Her son’s jaw hit the floor when she saw she planned to discard his Fisher-Price farm. He hadn’t played with it since he was six, but NO WAY was it going to the trash. He was quite adamant about this.
It’s been about nine years since then, and he’s working on his master’s degree. I’ve always meant to ask him if he still has the Fisher-Price farm.
On the medical front, I erred in my last entry. I have a stye on my right eyelid, not pinkeye. The good doctor prescribed an ointment for me, but the pharmacy didn’t have it, so I’ll pick it up tomorrow (I hope) after work.