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Computer Storm
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If your computer's going to go south, you know it's going to do it just when you're finishing revision on a book and in the middle of a snowstorm. It's a given.

So last night, about halfway to ten inches of the white stuff that's going to keep us from getting anywhere (like a computer store) for days, my computer tells me the Windows registry is corrupted, or whatever. Nothing makes for a good night's sleep like a corrupted registry, or whatever.

To a lot of folks reading this, that might not seem like a big deal. I know there are people who fiddle their registeries for fun. But for me to edit a registry would be like trying to remove the cat's appendix with a butter knife. I might as well kick the box down the stairs and be done with it. I didn't own a computer till I was forty. I spent an hour looking for a file called "registry" for god's sake.

Well, at least I could boot in DOS so my life was not completely over. I could always write a bit or play Daleks. But I couldn't go online and I wasn't relishing revising a novel in the DOS editor. Or losing every piece of information I've collected and failed to back up for six years!

The error message explained how I could kiss and make better. SCANREG /FIX. Or, SCANREG /RESTORE. You'd think I wouldn't fall for that computer humor, after all those "This Program Has Perfomed An Illegal Operation...." and "click here" to close boxes, where the buttons do absolutely nothing!! Ever!! So I typed in the DOS commands. And....Ahahahahaha!!!

Nothing like a little levity to ease the tension. Mary was looking stuff up on the internet for me. I figured out what "registry" was called. Obviously you wouldn't dare call it registry because...well...obviously....So then I went searching for the backup files that the computer couldn't find and which weren't called registry either.

Finally we get to the moment of truth, manually replacing the file that might, possibly be corrupted, with the backup. If you understand computers you can't grasp the mind bending, Lovecraftian of horror something like that holds for the computer illiterate.

I held my breath and hit RETURN. The deed was done. I turned off, hit the power switch. Jesus on a bicycle! The sob came on! Man, I have raised the dead.

As for what happens tomorrow. I know for sure the sun will rise.

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