I am doomed, a cipher set adrift in the universe by the modern equivalent of Stanley Kubrick’s psycho-computer Hal singing Daisy Daisy as it pushes me gently out towards the vast empty universe and certain death.

My Mac’s hard drive is buggered.

For anyone out there looking suddenly smug about their depressingly functional PC, may I say that my Mac is doing incredibly well for a finely tuned machine that has been dropped, oh, about as many times as Jimmy Saville convinced the world he was a nice fellow. Otherwise it’s only used for everything in my life including a little light novel writing so should be fresh as a daisy, even after two and a half years. I happened to be in America when this happened, so I took it around the corner to the local Genius Bar, where a nice man named Wayne hooked it up for “diagnostics.”

“Hmmm,” said Wayne, studying all the little boxes that came up on my screen, most of which were marked by a cheerfully reassuring green light. “Doesn’t look too bad. Battery’s a bit shot, but….”

Then he restarted it.  And a weird little symbol I’d never noticed before came up on the screen.

“Oh dear,” said Wayne, looking genuinely alarmed. “That’s not good. You need a new hard drive. The sooner the better.”

I segued seamlessly into panic. “Please please please can you replace it, Wayne? I’ll be your best friend, I’ll give you my firstborn child.” Neither Wayne nor firstborn child looked impressed.

“Sorry, I can’t install a new hard drive today,” Wayne said, prying my lips off his shoe. “We’re pretty busy.”

“But this is my livelihood!” I pled.  “I’m losing, at a rough estimate, tens of pounds a day.”

“Oh dear,” said Wayne.

Then he paused, and a look of genuine human sympathy came over his face. My heart leapt.

“Have a great day,” Wayne said.

It was cold and grey the following day when we touched down in London, and the guy at passport control had the indifferent cold eyes of a gecko. He uttered not a single friendly syllable as he waved me through.

I could have kissed him.


8 thoughts on “Have a great day!

  1. Martine 6 years ago

    My partner and I fitted a new hard drive in his mac a few weeks ago, following a nice step by step video online, it was a bit scary but a great feeling when he pressed the go button and the startup chime sounded:-)
    hope you’re back to normal now

    1. Meg Rosoff 6 years ago

      Yikes, really? Might just have to bite the bullet and try it….

  2. Shelley Souza 6 years ago

    Hope you’re able to retrieve all of the data from current hard drive to new. (Are using anything like Crash Plan, which will back up your computer in real time, so that you never lose data if the computer dies?)

  3. jackie 6 years ago

    I always find the idea of a new computer nerve wracking and exciting. Hope everything is backed up and saved. I love my new mac. Didn’t copy anything across, not even iTunes. Clean slate. Beautiful.

  4. nicola baird 6 years ago

    I have butterflies thinking about how terrible this is. I can recommend the man Nicolette recommends to help sort out all computer problems though. He comes to your house.

  5. Jake Elliott 6 years ago

    If you’re struggling to recover your documents, run a quick Google search for something like ‘deleted file recovery’ or ‘hard drive recovery’. I downloaded a tool a few months back which managed to recover 98% of the files I lost off an old memory stick – and I haven’t had any problems since. It was a little awkward to use, but the end result was worth it. I don’t know; just something to look into if you’re desperate for your files back – always do a virus scan first, though!

    1. Meg Rosoff 6 years ago

      I am beautifully, thoroughly backed up. And the computer still works. It’s just getting quirkier and quirkier. Sigh.

  6. Candy Gourlay 6 years ago

    Big sympathies. Computer bits are just plugged into sockets under the cover, with plugging-in thingies. And if it’s not plugged to the wall, it doesn’t tend to explode while being thus manipulated. A younger brain doesn’t yet have the ability to add the layers of fear an older brain would add to such a project. You need a teenager to do it for you.

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