Hi-Tech Honey
by Milo Clark

Last week, I related some painful experience with my latest computer purchase that made me feel like a technoidiot. Today, let me prove with these little stories that I am not alone.

1. Compaq is considering changing the command "Press Any Key" to "Press Return Key" because of the flood of calls asking where the "Any" key is.

2. AST technical support had a caller complaining that her mouse was hard to control with the dust cover on. The cover turned out to be the plastic bag the mouse was packaged in.

3. Another Compaq technician received a call from a man complaining that the system wouldn't read word processing files from his old diskettes. After trouble shooting for magnets and heat failed to diagnose the problem, it was found that the customer labeled the diskettes then rolled them into the typewriter to type the labels.

4. Another AST customer was asked to send a copy of her defective diskettes. A few days later a letter arrived from the customer along with Xeroxed copies of the floppies.

5. A Dell technician advised his customer to put his troubled floppy back in the drive and close the door. The customer asked the tech to hold on? and was heard putting the phone down, getting up and crossing the room to close the door to his room.

6. Another Dell customer called to say he couldn't get his computer to fax anything. After 40 minutes of troubleshooting, the technician discovered the man was trying to fax a piece of paper by holding it in front of the monitor screen and hitting the "send" key.

7. Another Dell customer needed help setting up a new program, so a Dell tech suggested he go to a local Egghead. "Yeah, I got me a couple of friends," the customer replied. When told that Egghead was a software store, the man said, "Oh, I thought you meant for me to find a couple of geeks"!

8. Yet another Dell customer called to complain that his keyboard no longer worked. He had cleaned it by filling up his tub with soap and water and soaking the keyboard for a day, then removing all the keys and washing them individually.

9. A Dell technician received a call from a customer who was enraged because his computer had told him he was "bad and Invalid". The tech explained that the computer's "bad command" and "Invalid" No.018 responses shouldn't be taken personally.

10. An exasperated caller to Dell Computer Tech Support couldn't get her new Dell Computer to turn on. After ensuring that the computer was Plugged In, the technician asked her what happened when she pushed the Power button. Her response, "I pushed and pushed on this foot pedal and nothing happened." The "foot pedal" turned out to be the computer's mouse.

11. Another customer called Compaq tech support to say her brand new computer wouldn't work. She said she unpacked the unit, plugged it in, and sat there for a few minutes waiting for something to happen. When asked what happened when she pressed the power switch, she asked "What power switch?"

And if you haven't had enough, read this (From the October 21, 1996 edition of the Washington Post):


Here's more on why Arkansas is everyone's favorite state. This is from the Arkansas Democrat Gazette:

"Two local men were seriously injured when their pickup truck left the road near Cotton Plant on State Highway 38 early Monday morning...

"Thurston Poole, 33, of Des Arc, and Billy Ray Wallis, 38, of Little Rock are listed in serious condition at Baptist Medical Center. The accident occurred as the two men were returning to Des Arc after a frog-gigging trip [Note to city slickers: frog-gigging, or frog-sticking, is how, armed with a small pitchfork, you catch frogs from the bayou bank. Frog legs make a tasty supper.]

"On an overcast sunday night, Poole's pickup truck headlights malfunctioned. The two men concluded that the headlight fuse on the older-model truck had burned out. As a replacement fuse was not available, Wallis noticed that the .22 caliber bullet from his pistol fit perfectly into the fuse box next to the steering wheel column. Upon inserting the bullet, the headlights again began to operate and the two men proceeded on eastbound toward the White River Bridge.

"After traveling approximately 20 miles and just before crossing the river, the bullet apparently overheated, discharged and struck Poole in the right testicle. The vehicle swerved sharply to the right, exiting the pavement and striking the tree. Poole suffered only minor cuts and abrasions from the accident, but will require surgery to repair the other wound. Wallis sustained a broken clavicle and was treated and released.

" 'Thank God we weren't on that bridge when Thurston shot his nuts off or we might have been dead,' said Wallis.

" 'I've been a trooper for 10 years in this part of the world,' said Deputy Snyder, 'but this is a first for me. I can't believe that those two would admit how the accident happened.'

"Upon being notified of the wreck, Lavinia, Poole's wife, asked how many frogs the boys had caught and did anyone think to get them from the truck."

Published November 18, 1996
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