They hopped the fence: how our ideas (and our chickens) take off
Thursday, November 15, 2018
"Writing is for the birds!" Photo taken here in La Ciotat this morning, when things were peaceful....
Today's Word: les guillemets
: quotation mark
I set out to tell you a story about fugitive hens (no worries, they're back) when every possible distraction known to man or bird befell me. Welcome to a typical beginning to each and every writing session.
If I am currently typing this on my mobile phone, squinting at a tiny screen while hunched over my kitchen counter, it is because I refuse to let them win!
Them are the hurdles I've suffered in the 37 minutes since firing up that godforsaken laptop in order to compose a colorful récit.
Them are different or the same every time. This morning thems a mind-numbingly slow computer (this binary slug no longer allows me to type guillemets, so I have to use italics instead--in fact none of the numbers or characters on my laptop's numeric keypad work. Type the small c-with its cedilla-and I get an empty space. A blank!).
Earlier, d'un seul coup, my lazy HP switched keyboards on me, from AZERTY to QWERTY, meaning every time I type m I get a point-virgule (or something--who can possibly recall details at a time like this?).
Ça rame! Ça rame! Waiting 37 minutes for my (relatively new) PC to warm up, an opening line to this story is thrumming on my mind (or was). But as fresh new computer glitches arise and test me, I've lost my story's delivery along with bits of my memory.
Extremely frustrated I want to slam something (not my laptop! How 'bout a pastis?) Instead, I stomp on over to the kitchen counter, where my smartphone is charging...and where I am now reduced to typing with two thumbs, which feels dumber than bad grammar. Au fait...
Them may have stolen a lot this morning–-nerves and nearly my sanity--but thems still haven't taken away my tenacity! I leave you with an unexpected vocabulary section (how different the words would be had all gone smoothly).
un récit = story
les guillemets = quotation marks
un point-virgule = semi-colon
Ça rame = it's chugging along (literally, it's paddling)
d'un seul coup = all at once
un pastis = anis-flavored alcohol
au fait = by the way
amicalement = cheers, fondly, yours...
keyboard = le clavier
computer = un ordinateur
QWERTY = a standard English-language typewriter or computer keyboard on which the first six letters of the second row are q, w, e, r, t, and y --https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/QWERTYAZERTYkeyMerriam-Webster
AZERTY - The AZERTY keyboard first appeared within the last decades of the 19th century in France as an alternative layout to the American QWERTY version of typewriters -Technopedia.com
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For more online reading: The Lost Gardens: A Story of Two Vineyards and a Sobriety
My rating of computers, hardware and software combined, is Automobiles 1910. The difference is that almost no one had an automobile in 1910, so the problems of running out of fuel, an exploded engine or other failures that barred a person from reaching the desired destination, were limited to a few. It takes longer than ten years for computers to advance to Automobiles 1920, or reach the level of an automobile from the 1990s, which does not rust until about 20 years of ownership, and has a very reliable engine.
So many of us must put up with products that do not deliver on their promises, with these electronic devices! Glad you saw the birds at the beach, what a great image.
Posted by: Sarah LaBelle | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 01:10 PM
You write it so well.
I was glad to be up early this morning to see it come in to me in Arizona.
It was another good one.
Posted by: gordon lyman | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 01:25 PM
Sad to see graffiti on the tower. No one escapes.
Posted by: Robert | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 01:36 PM
I guess many will identify with you Kristi . No amount of hair tearing & shouting at it ever seems to work .I find sometimes to shut it down completely & let it get over its' sulks works !!
Anyway Bon Courage Kristi
Posted by: Audrey Wilson | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 02:35 PM
Gotta love those old computer systems. My home PC is so old, I've uploaded copies of all my family photos to Flickr just in case it dies soon. I think I bought it in 2007 and it's more than lived out its lifetime. I'd hate to lose all those memorable photos. Good luck with your devices!
Posted by: Marcia | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 02:42 PM
And so it goes ... But those words and ideas will return for you to share with us another day. Glad to hear the chickens came home to roost too! Bonne journée :-)
Posted by: Patricia Sands | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 02:56 PM
Computers can be so frustrating especially for me because I am not computer savvy. As I was reading your column my microwave dinged with my oatmeal and when I got up to get it, the cat sat on my keyboard and now I'm not sure what I've lost after all the buttons being pushed and windows opening up! I guess I won't know what I've lost until I need it! LOL
I'm in rainy Atlanta visiting my Mom
Posted by: Eileen deCamp | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 03:00 PM
The idea that no one can steal my peace eludes me 95% of the time,but I hold onto that idea!
I love this photo of the birds. It is like an artist's study of the most iconic poses.
Posted by: Leslie NYC | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 03:34 PM
Some very long-distance IT guesswork: If your laptop is relatively new, running Windows 10(?), and extremely slow to start up, it may be trying to update. Windows updates can be a problem. Go into Settings, Update and Security (or similar label) and check the status of updates. You may need to allow them to download, restart the computer, it could take a while, especially if your connection is slow (relatively).
You may need to restart more than once. The machine may be backlogged with updates, and the process could take a while. But, with some patience, you may be able to get your machine running well again.
Or, it could be something else...
Good luck! I enjoy your blog.
Posted by: Eric Lester | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 03:35 PM
My computer becomes bi-lingual at times also. It switches to the French keyboard when ever it "darn-well-pleases"! I guess it remembers that we write in French sometimes. I had to learn how to reset it.
Posted by: Herm in Phoenix, AZ | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 04:05 PM
I feel your computer pain.No matter how I try, my mind does not comprehend how they work. You've seen that cartoon were the baby is talking on the phone, telling the grandma how to fix her computer problem? Well thats just how I feel. Its all second nature to my grand kids. They are my go too fixers ... When will they let us talk to them(computers) and do the typing for us? That would be real progress!
Will your mom consider a guest post updating us on her new French life? Love to you both!
Posted by: shodgson | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 04:07 PM
Computers are such a blessing and a curse. They do so much we rely on them, and then are befuddled when they don't do what we expect. Glad you have the phone at least (and vision good enough to be able to use it to write). You're very resourceful, I would say, and I rejoice that you persevered, and that you shared the lovely photo of the birds. Thanks.
Posted by: Carolyn Chase | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 04:35 PM
Different topic altogether! How is your daughter Jackie faring in CO? Did she ever find a job? (Perhaps I missed a post??). Hope she is doing well and will enjoy a family American Thanksgiving next week!
Posted by: Elizabeth | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 04:58 PM
And 'them' didn't get your humor either. See, all is o.k. A couple of years ago somehow, someway, my computer decided it no longer liked English and switched languages on me. The fortunate things was, it decided French would be what it would use.My French is less than mediocre, but at least what I did not totally understand I could get the "gist' of. My MAC guru was able to finally talk me through changing back.
Posted by: joie | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 05:05 PM
I have always had a love hate relationship with my computer. Frankly, I miss my typewriter which I used for years and never let me down. What a gorgeous photo and how lucky you are to live in such a beautiful place.
Happy Thanksgiving and enjoy the blessings of your beautiful world.Janine
Posted by: Janine cortell | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 05:25 PM
I am an Apple person and my husband is a PC person. He has more problems with his computer. Unfortunately I just downloaded the new Operating system for the Mac, Majove and now I cannot download my Nikon camera pictures because Nikon has not upgrade their software. But we downloaded my Nikon CD onto my husbands PC and I have to do my pictures that way. It is so much more complicated. But we downloaded them to a thumb drive and I uploaded them to my computer.
You upgrade one thing and then another doesn’t work with it. It also happened with my IPhone. I had issues with it and then needed to up grade so it would sync with my new operating system. How infuriating.
Cars aren’t like that, although they do not make my Saab anymore, but I can still get parts.
TECHNOLOGY, you ca;’t live without , but it sure complicates your life.
Sorry for the rant.
Posted by: Kathleen from Connecticut | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 05:56 PM
....IT IS SHOCKING HOW WE ARE SUCH 'SLAVES' TO ALL OF OUR WONDERFUL DRVICES! NOTHING IS MORE FRUSTRATING THAN A COMPUTER ON THE FRITZ OR TAKING FOREVER TO UPDATE! CHECK ALL OF YOUR UPDATES, LET THEM ROLL AND THEN I USUALLY TURN EVERYTHING OFF ( UNPLUG) AND WAIT ABOUT 3 MINUTES AND THEN TURN EVRYTHING ON AGAIN. USUALLY BEHAVES ITSELF ..... OOPS, I JUST REALIZED I HAD THE CAPS ON. SORRY. I ALWAYS LOOK FORWARD TO YOU ADVENTURES OF ALL KINDS. I HOPE YOU HAVE A LOVELY THANKSGIVING WITH FAMILY AND/OR FRIENDS. HAVING 'UNE DINDE'? AMICALEMENT, Judi
Posted by: Judith Dunn | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 06:02 PM
Ah, our electronic devices. We can't live with them, we can't live without them!
Posted by: Keith Van Sickle | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 06:22 PM
Do you have a key on your number pad that says "number lock" or something like that? Click it and you might solve the problem.
Posted by: Jan | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 06:34 PM
Et les poulets?
Posted by: Linda Darsie | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 07:01 PM
Ha. I'm reading this in the afternoon after having spent the morning trying to get rid of an annoying piece of malware that my anti-virus software somehow has missed. (They keep getting sneakier with their extensions!) Anyway, then I got to your recit and cracked up. C'est tres drole, n'est-ce pas? (No French keyboard here- quelle dommage.)
Posted by: Pam Horovitz | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 08:21 PM
Loving how you turned conniptions into chuckles, Kristi, as The Feelthy Thems stole your best thunder!!
A tasty cup of tea with feet up and eyes on the sky (or les poulets) recommended. Merci, comme toujours.
Posted by: Kitty Wilson-Pote | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 08:55 PM
Our dear Kristi,
No matter what headaches(and annoyances!)happen in your life,each and every post gives us a chance to tackle the stuff in our own lives and try to handle it with as much grace(and patience!) as you do!
Wow! Thank you!
We feel your hugs!Now please feel ours!!
Posted by: Natalia Radula | Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 09:51 PM
La photo des oiseaux de Ciotat est merveilleuse !!! Elle coupe le souffle à moi !
Joanne NJ, USA
Posted by: Joanne Polner | Friday, November 16, 2018 at 11:24 PM
My computer is in slow mode these days, too, which drives me wild sometimes!
Thanks for your story and I learned some new things about keyboards as well!!
Posted by: Georgia | Tuesday, November 20, 2018 at 07:41 PM