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Friday, February 11, 2011

Sideways User Names

Dear Dad, 

                I pride myself on my understanding of technology, after all I install internet and set up networks for a living. I am new to things like ‘Facebook’ and ‘smart phones’, but I have been quick to catch on and for the most part successful. Today I encountered my first techno wall. It was large and formidable. Unlike most walls, this one protected nothing important, my task was a meager one. Their was no maiden waiting to be rescued, no children’s lives were in peril. So why did I endeavor to persevere, why does it deserve a letter? Well judge for yourself.

               I was relaxed in my recliner, my laptop was where it was made to be, in my lap. My phone was on my belt. The children were playing on the floor, doing something more cute than average. I saw this and because in this day and age real time updates are of such extreme importance I ripped my phone from it’s holster quicker than ‘Doc Holiday.’ I flipped the camera selector to video and shot a thirty second clip of the kids. Now on this phone I can take a photo and then ‘one-touch’ share it on Facebook. As it turns out I can not do that with a video. The option just wasn’t there. It did give me an option to e-mail the video though. If I could e-mail it to myself, then I could save the video to my computer and post it online the ‘normal’ way. So I tried it. The phone gave me a very polite error message. The file was too large to be sent as an attachment. It was 5.27 Mb and 5 Mb is the limit. Murphy’s law prevails. Now I am starting to get a little pissed off. I mean what’s the point of being able to shoot video with your phone if you can’t do anything with the resulting video. I shouted this to the furniture in my living room and threatened the phone with destruction and cancellation of service. It paid no heed and continued to give me the same error message. Yes, I like most people refuse to believe the first error message, as if it must be mistaken. So I stubbornly tried to e-mail the video three times. Surely I, (the Man) can’t be wrong.

             Then I figured it out. The phone had a link to ’YouTube.’ I could send the video there and then post it for my friends. I clicked the appropriate boxes and the phone asked me to sign in to YouTube or create a new account. I typed in my e-mail address and filled out all the pertinent information. Then the phone asked me to select a user name. I think that everyone has experienced this nightmare. I crossed my fingers and nervously typed in ‘missourian.’
             Sorry this user name is already taken.
             Sorry, you’re an Idiot, try again.
             Sorry loser, any other bright Ideas.
             Sorry, please get a clue, it is taken.
             ‘the missourian’
             Check user name, character not allowed.
             Sorry, sarcastic user name is not allowed.
             Sorry dumbass did you think you were the only garrett in the whole world.

             All of a sudden the phone did something else and I knew that I had finally succeeded. It was about time too. If my GI Joe kung fu grip had gotten any tighter, I would have broke the phone. In the split second the phone was thinking I mourned the loss of my usual user name ‘Missourian.’ It is a very cool name. I first starting using it on first person shooter games on my Playstation. I got the idea from the old western show ‘The Virginian’ and for a fleeting moment it occurred to me that it must suck to live in Ohio or Illinois because how do you say Ohioian or Illinoisian.

             Right at the peak of this enjoyed levity my phone informed me that an account already existed with that e-mail address. My god, I must have had this address for five years now, and one night probably after a night at the bar, I must have created a YouTube account. Well hell, I spent the next ten minutes guessing at all the passwords I have ever used. Finally I gave up and used my wife’s e-mail address, my new username and my common password. Success. I posted the video to YouTube, transferred it to Facebook and prepared to revel in my glory. Well the video showed up sideways. Anybody who watches it will suffer afterwards from taco neck. Six hours have gone by and my sideways video earned zero comments. Nobody even checked the ‘like’ box.

            I did it though, I conquered the wireless dimension. I AM THE MAN. After the yelling, swearing and tears, my wife brought me her phone and said, “honey, will you help me post this video on Facebook.” I’ll probably have to call in sick to work tomorrow, but we’ll get it done.

                     your tech support getting, wired in, www.son.

1 comment:

ThisHorseThing said...

Yes, The Missourian is a cool name - and I was immediately reminded of that tough, but honorable cowboy, The Virginian! Of course, it's natural for me to make a cowboy connection. I just started my own Youtube account, so I can empathize.