A Farewell to Old Computers, and Brick-and-Mortar Stores Too?

I haven’t actually purchased a computer since 2006, they were getting slow and I decided it was time I upgraded. Still, when you have a thing for such a long time it becomes familiar, a part of your life. I have three main computers, I’ll start with the newest and work my way back…

My little 9″ Acer Aspire One laptop. You were given to me by my partner who upgraded, and I have to say, you’re a trooper. Remember that terrible, cringe-worthy fall you had? I turned you on to make sure you were OK, and was amazed you were fine. Then later I left you turned on on a cluttered desk for weeks while I debated reformatting you. I’m sure you were overheating the whole time, yet over a year later you’re still going. I never thought I could like using something so small, but I discovered you did everything I needed and were especially good for reading. You’ve gone above and beyond the call of duty, but we both know you’ve gotten slow. I can’t see reinstalling XP again, and you’re just not able to run anything higher. But I might give you a new lease on life with Linux…

Ah, my Compaq desktop. I got you for free when Mom got rid of you, so I used you for downloading large sets of files so it didn’t slow down my main computer. Remember how I wiped Vista and installed XP and you ran a million times better? I remember how noisy you were until I took you outside and blew all that dust out of you with an air compressor? I feel bad getting rid of you because you’ve gotten so little use and you’re still perfectly usable.

And finally, my main IBM desktop computer purchased for $280 way back in 2006! I still have the receipt! You’ve sat in the same place on my desk for 8 years, like a piece of furniture. Like…a friend? I had no idea you’d last this long, and I bet you’d last many more years to come. You weren’t even new when I bought you refurbished! I upgraded your RAM, reinstalled your OS every few years and frankly you still run great for everyday tasks. We’ve had some crashes, and I had to re-seat your hard drive connection a few times, but you still run better than any of the others (shhh! don’t tell!). But we both know your hard drives are old and I would rather migrate away before something bad happens. It’s better to part on good, fond memories, don’t you think? Still, getting rid of you feels wrong too.

This desk is going to look so empty…

All I have to fill it now is my new 11.6” ASUS laptop.

Kinda sad story about that too…

I researched until I found what I wanted, but I decided I’d buy it at a local store because it was going to cost about the same, and would be easier to return if need be.

I checked the stores website to make sure it was available, but I get there and of course, they don’t have it. I saw that coming. The sales guy was helpful, but I told him I’d just have to buy it online, I didn’t want to wait for them to order it, and then have to drive back there.

Honestly, I left sad. Not because I didn’t have a new computer, but because I thought I’d help out a local store and because I don’t want to see brick-and-mortar stores disappear. I was also sad because this store seemed a bit shabbier than last time I was there. Some shelves were empty, some were very disorganized. I don’t want to see computer stores disappear the same way we’ve seen bookstores disappear. To top it off, it’s next to a dying mall, perhaps the epitome of what I’m talking about.

But back to my computers. I hate to get rid of perfectly good things, but as I’ve said in other posts, I’m really trying to simplify my life. Keeping up with things becomes a challenge when you have three computers with 6 hard drives between them.

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