Ella Minnow Pea Redux or, My keys won’ work

Wa do you do wen your keyboard malfunions?

Wen my spae bar sopped working, I aed online wi Dell e suppor.  e e old me I would reeie a new keyboard in e mail. I was supposed o insall i.

“Me?” I said. “Insall a keyboard?”

e e said i would be a snap. If I needed elp, e would walk me roug i.

I go e keyboard and looked up e insruions, wi said I ad o unsrew e bak. I jus knew I would be eleroued.

Bu I boug a se of srewdriers a RadioSak and flipped e lapop oer, remoed e baery, and aaked e srews.

e srews wouldn’ budge. I exanged a srewdrier for anoer srewdrier. I used all six. None of em worked.

I wen online again o a wi Dell. e e lisened, en old me o ry again.

I oug abou e definiion aribued o Einsein: Insaniy is doing e same ing oer and oer and expeing a differen resul.

“I wouldn’ urn,” I old e e.

He said e would send a e ou o e ouse o insall e keyboard for me. (I’m no dummy. Wen I boug e lapop, I boug a e o go wi i.)

Anyway, e nex day a e ame. He go ou is se of 3500 srewdriers, remoed e srews, ook off e old keyboard, and insalled e new one. He said I didn’ ave e rig size srewdrier. en e asked wa else I needed.

“I know you don’ ae an order for is, bu ould you wa me insall is exra memory a Dell e said I’m ompenen o insall myself?” He said e’d o i for me. I oug a was ery swee.

Anyway, i’s appened again, exep is ime i’s more an e spaebar. I’s e , , , and  keys.

I’e used anned air. So far all i’s done is make ings worse. Wen I began, only e  key was ou.

How an I wrie wiou a keyboard?

So tomorrow I’ll chat with my Dell tech and–

Well, mercy me. I took a half-hour break and now all the keys are working again. I wonder what that was all about.

Nevertheless, I shall report the anomaly. Call me an alarmist, but I don’t want this to happen a third time when I’m preparing a manuscript for submission. If the keyboard should be replaced, I want it replaced now.

But still–I’m torn. If I do need a new keyboard, I want a tech to make a house call. I don’t have the proper screwdriver, I don’t know the size screwdriver to buy, and I don’t want to tamper with something that is still under warranty.

On the other hand, I have to consider the worst-case scenario: He takes out his screwdriver, loosens the screws, turns the laptop over, removes the keyboard, and sees lurking there beneath the metal and plastic plate the reason for my current technical distress: rumbs.

e same, e earae, e disgrae a being found guily of su a soleism. e prospe is oo illing o spell ou.

Bu for the sake of ar, I sall submi myself o e proud man’s onumely. omorrow I sall a wi Dell.

8 thoughts on “Ella Minnow Pea Redux or, My keys won’ work

  1. Rumbs? This is sary news. My keyboards all have rumbs. I turn them upside down and bang on them so hard the puter polie ould turn me in for abuse. A up of rumbs falls out. You remind me I need to do it again. Thanx a bunh.

    This really matters beause I don’t have a Dell and my whole fleet of omputers is out of warranty. So no Teh.


    1. I read about your operating on a system file. I thought that was very brave. When anything about system files appears on my screen, I close immediately and find something else to do.

      Tech support at a large state agency told me to turn my keyboard upside down and shake it. Rumbs galore, plus a tiny srap of paper. I was sure I’d be fired for eating lunch at my desk (which I did because I was BUSY). I’m afraid to bang on the laptop since there’s something important inside.


  2. As if the actual writing’s not hard enough, we have technical difficulties. I don’t know how I misuse my laptops, but I tend to burn through one about every two years.

    Luckily (or unluckily?) my keyboard usually works…


    1. Two years? Uh-oh. Mine is about to celebrate its second birthday.

      Looking at your list of publications, I’d say it’s probably lucky your keyboard works. I look forward to Goliath.


  3. ritergal, you beat me to it!! My keyboard is not malfunctioning but it’s a new laptop and my fingers are not used to it. It’s a bit clunkier and less sensitive than my old one, so I’m always having to go back now and fix mistakes. The space bar is especially dull and needs to be clicked hard before it will make a space. Ugh.


    1. Since writing has its own built-in obstacles, it seems unfair our keyboards should throw new potholes into our paths. I protest loud and long.

      On the other hand, when I remember carbon paper…


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