Letter to My Cantankerous Computer

Dear Laptop,

As we approach our TEN-YEAR anniversary, I’ve been looking back over our time together. We’ve been through so much, haven’t we? High school, college, and grad school assignments, infinite Google searches (which you’ve never judged), and lots of illegal downloads of poor-quality Limewire music. (Sorry about all the viruses.)

You’ve truly done many amazing things for me.

However, there’s a lot wrong with you.

Your battery died a long time ago, and I not only have to keep you plugged in at all times, I also have to keep your cord in the exact correct position. You’re irrationally fussy about that, so I’ve had to TAPE your cord to keep it in place. For the record, that’s not normal. If it’s jostled even the tiniest bit, you instantly shut down.

That is immature, controlling behavior that marriage therapists would call “stonewalling.”

Further, do you know what you’ve put me through each time you’ve randomly shut off? Whenever you did this during my work on research papers, I got pretty angry with you. I considered setting you on fire more than once. When you’d take your precious time turning back on, my anger would turn to anxiety that maybe this was it – maybe you really were dead this time. Anguish would set in. I’d contemplate throwing myself on you and sobbing. And then finally, your screen would glow bright with technological health, and I’d feel a rush of relief.

You manipulative bastard.

Speaking of death, you’ve also completely crashed and died, and then been brought back to life – TWICE. I admit, I wasn’t innocent in that situation – because I didn’t use the right protection, you got some pretty serious viruses. But that was so long ago, and let’s keep in mind that my behavior was accidental. Can you say the same for yours?

Honestly, I’m not sure whether to be pissed at your flair for drama, or impressed by your ability to resurrect.

The most baffling is when you allow your “on” button to fall inside of the computer, and then I have to fish it out with a straightened paper clip. Why do you do this, laptop? Do you realize that this is a quick ticket to electrocution for me? I can’t unplug you during the procedure, because I need the on button to stay lit up so I can find it.

If you ask me, you’re just doing this shit for attention.

My feelings about you have followed the same predictable pattern found in human relationships. I was thrilled when we first met! We were both so young back then, weren’t we? Then after a little time together, once I learned all the great things about you, I was in love. Now, after years of your bad behavior and my shouting obscenities at you, our relationship feels a bit rocky.

But despite the tension, I recognize that you really have done a lot for me. You continue to store every picture I’ve taken and every song I’ve downloaded since I was seventeen. You helped me obsessively scour the Internet for jobs when I finished grad school. You’ve kept me entertained with games like FreeCell and Snake, and you’ve supported me through all that Facebook stalking.

So maybe, just maybe, I can overlook the fact that you won’t let me download the latest version of iTunes. You’re incredibly old (in technology years), and clearly, there are some things you just can’t do anymore.

Others see you, with your taped cord, and fragile “on” button, and they just don’t understand you. They want me to leave you for a newer model. But we’ve been together for 10 years – which, let’s face it, is probably longer than the average REAL marriage. You don’t end a relationship like that without good reason.

No, I could never just leave you, dear laptop.


Unless your quirks start to outweigh your usefulness – then I probably will.

Sincerely yours,

16 thoughts on “Letter to My Cantankerous Computer

  1. Susu

    Treat yourself and go get a new laptop. Or I Pad. Love mine! I think your old computer is truly doing all that SHIT for attention, but the wrong kind Show it who is truly BOSS!


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