Kindness for Computers
The theme of today was computer trouble. We all know the frustrations that come when a very expensive machine simply does not do what it is supposed to. Since our childhood, my brother and I were notorious for tantrums directed toward video games, computers, faulty VCRs, etc. We came up with very creative ways to vent frustrations toward technology. To this day, my brother surely holds the record for most consecutive times slamming the reset button to the SNES after Madden '94 ‘cheated' one too many times for his liking.
I've since justified my outward displays of frustration by suggesting it is better served to a non-living electronic device. My favorite example of this mentality is the PC Load Letter scene in the movie, Office Space. Eventually, the trio of miserable employees take the copy machine out to a field and unload their frustration, bashing it into oblivion with a baseball bat. It wasn't just the poor copy machine that led to the relentless assault, it was an accumulation of years of frustration from their job, to a much higher degree than I have ever experienced. Of course, my justification was mocked and my video games were taken away for the weekend as punishment.
I learned my lesson to some extent, that is, to keep the outbursts private! Unfortunately, the computer joined forces with the manufacturer software today to repay me for a lifetime of mistreatment toward electronics. It just so happened it all occurred during my first patient visit of the day. We're talking at least four unrelated errors or malfunctions all in one session. It would have been enraging had it all happened across the span of one day, but all in one adjustment appointment? Long story short, the patient had come in for a cleaning and simple adjustment and left with one hearing aid, the other on its way to the manufacturer.
I felt all the too familiar feelings of frustration with each computer hiccup, expecting any minute for my clothes to rip as I turn into a large green creature. Thankfully, the patient was a kind and understanding man who probably sensed my ‘discontent' with the situation despite my best efforts to remain upbeat and positive. I swear the HI-Pro box let out a chuckle as I walked out of the fitting room defeated. The lesson of the day? Err ... I don't know, be nice to your computers? If you were ever mean to one in the past, find it and apologize. Trust me, they all know. And they will find you.