As American as Apple (and PC) pie


By Marla Boone - Contributing columnist



My computer, which still isn’t speaking to my phone, is more reluctant to obey than ever. I feel like the parent who brought a sinless babe into the world, nurtured it, loved it, cared for it, attended to its every need only to see the kid end up a serial killer. While my computer has not, technically, murdered many people, it is on the cusp of killing me from sheer frustration. It performs most tasks acceptably well. Not really stellar, you understand, and certainly at its own snail-like pace, but I harbor a smidgen of hopefulness that it will eventually do what I want it to do. Except retain all 580 songs on iTunes. I fully realize that by even using the phrase iTunes I am hopelessly dating myself. It is also of note that my computer, a PC, refuses to auto correct itunes to iTunes. Can’t we all just get along?

My friends have advised me there are more, much-improved venues from which to download music. Some of these apps don’t have the words “music” or “songs” or “tunes” in their name. Getting one of these new apps, though, would entail a few, unsavory steps. No. 1: I’d have to download the app. I am working with limited memory here. Both on the device and in my brain. No. 2: Once I downloaded a new app, I would have to learn to use it. iTunes may be old and outdated but so I am so it’s sort of a match made in heaven. When it works.

We have become a society of specialists. Medicine discovered specialists long ago. Other professions are following suit. Right at this minute I am waiting for a structural engineer to tell me how much wall I can put on my outbuilding before the whole thing falls down. I didn’t know there was such a thing as a structural engineer. It’s a specialty. Another line of work that has developed specialists is computer repair. You have your Apple gurus and you have your PC gurus. Before I knew the distinction would come back to haunt me, I bought a PC laptop and an Apple phone. They used to cooperate.

Then it was as if someone said, “Hey! Here is someone trying to mix apples (literally) with oranges. We can’t have that. We’re changing the rules and not necessarily telling anyone.”

At least that is what I imagine happened because overnight, my computer lost all my music and my phone won’t share. There are two choices when faced with a catastrophe like this. You either chuck all the wayward items into the trash, thus increasing the burden on the landfills with that attendant guilt or you throw yourself on the mercy of a specialist. Talk about lose-lose.

I opted for choice number two. I have been going to the same computer repair people for years. The one who was the slowest in his getaway attempt knows to speak in monosyllables, slowly, and to have a chair ready for me because it always takes me a long time to grasp what they are saying. This time I sat right up because the first thing he said was that they had a guy there who not only knew how to fix PCs, he also had been to Apple school. Remember reading about this a few weeks ago? It was such a notable event I think I’ve mentioned it before although previously I gave the app and the phone cutesy names to protect the innocent. Now I know there are no innocents in silicon chips. The incident bears repeating because this is the very definition of a two-fer! This is like finding a food that not only tastes good but also isn’t fattening. It’s like finding a brand of jeans that not only fit but are also still manufactured. It’s like finding (oh and please happen soon) weather that is not only hot but also low in humidity. It’s like discovering you have a tailwind on both legs of your bike ride. It’s that good. And that rare.

Unfortunately, even this learned man could not figure out what is wrong with my computer. He did discover I have two iTunes accounts. He is certain this is the source of the problem but knowing the source, unfortunately, doesn’t lead to the cure. Having two accounts is a very bad mistake on my part because, obviously, I can’t handle even one. How I came to acquire two is beyond me. And at this stage of the game I am fearful of trying almost every possible solution because I’m afraid the little bit of music I did manage to retrieve will become lost again.

I’m not quite sure why I am so attached to my laptop’s iTunes. My phone will store music. My phone will let me make a playlist of my music (and much more easily than my computer will, let me tell you). My phone will do everything with my music, in fact, except share it with my computer. Even after I’ve loved it and cared for it and nurtured it. Ingrate.

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By Marla Boone

Contributing columnist

Marla Boone resides in Covington and writes for Miami Valley Today.

Marla Boone resides in Covington and writes for Miami Valley Today.