Always one more (weird) thing


By Janice Lindsay, Contributing Writer

Janice Lindsay writes about when weird things all seem to happen at once.
Janice Lindsay

Is something awry in the atmosphere? Or is it me?

First, the track pad on my new laptop quit. 

I also use an external mouse. To use Old Mouse on New Laptop, I needed Gizmo One. Mouse has the old-fashioned big plug but Laptop has only a new-fashioned teeny port, so Mouse plug won’t fit. Gizmo One has one large port; its teeny plug fits into Laptop. Plug Mouse into Gizmo, Gizmo into Laptop, works great. 

Until track pad quits.

Phone Computer Company Guru. Broken track pad is a hardware problem, send Laptop to Repair. Under warranty, free. They send shipping box. Guru says back up contents onto external hard drive before shipping. My External Hard Drive (EHD) has the old-fashioned large plug. Cannot plug Mouse and EHD into Gizmo One at the same time. Without Mouse, cannot tell Laptop to back up contents. So, buy Gizmo 2, with four large ports. Plug Mouse and EHD into Gizmo Two, Gizmo Two into Laptop and…

Suddenly, trackpad works again.

Phone Guru. Her technical judgement: “That is weird.”

Weirdness didn’t stop at Laptop.

Landline phone stopped ringing when someone called. Phone company guy checked everything, pronounced Phone dead. Phones die?

That night, I tried to set the house’s alarm system. It refused. Error message: “Control TMPR.” Control temper? Probably not. I located manual: control panel had been tampered with. (What?) Eventually, I realized that after the phone guy checked the wiring in the control panel, he neglected to lock its door. “Tampering.”

My elderly refrigerator made alarming cracking noises. Death seemed imminent. Bought new one. Installers could not install it. New Fridge has no ice maker, old one did. Installers could not turn water hose off completely at the cellar connection, rusty valve maybe. If they disconnected hose from dying refrigerator, it would drip forever. So new refrigerator waited in the garage. I hired plumber to close the line.

I saw the doctor with back pain, suspecting my elderly mattress; he agreed. Found new one but could not accept delivery on the first afternoon they suggested because I was having root canal surgery, which had been postponed from eight weeks before when, after seeing my dentist in serious pain and being told a dying tooth was infected and being on antibiotics and feeling better, I saw the endodontist whose technologies couldn’t identify which of two teeth was the offender, and sent me home to wait until it got worse.

Well water suddenly smelled odd when I opened the tap. Water test company said not serious, well must be “shocked” (flushed with bleach). Test anyway. They sent test kit, I followed instructions, whisked kit to the post office, kit arrived at lab after the time limit, they would send me another kit, forgot, I waited three weeks, tried again, water is fine except for one teeny problem that shocking will correct. Contractor said he would shock the well on Tuesday. Didn’t. That was six Tuesdays ago.

Photo/Janice Lindsay
Photo/Janice Lindsay

The security certificate of my internet service provider expired so for three days other systems thought I was a spammer. The generator didn’t go on automatically when the power quit during a storm. The next time, it did. 

I asked the universe, “What else have you got?” The universe sent a wasp mob to build a basketball-size nest around, and hanging from, a pair of floodlights near the peak of the garage roof.  It looks like a weird bug-eyed monster inhabiting my house, and it seems just about right.




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