Tuesday 28 February 2012

netbooks and coffee

My netbook died. Less than a year after I got it. Which I had to do because my last netbook died...in exactly the same way.

This annoyed me.

Buddhist teachings tell me that my computer dying is not a problem. The unpleasant feelings its dying provokes in me is the problem. Yes. I agree. It has provoked very unpleasant feelings and yes, they do feel like a problem.

I took the netbook to PC World, with fists and buttocks firmly clenched in anticipation of the mindless conversation I knew I was about to have.

Various spiritual teachings (and actually this is now being echoed in scientific and social research) tell me that this would have immediately been generating the wrong sort of energy and subconsciously by behaving in a negative way and anticipating the worst, I was in fact unwittingly willing the worst to indeed happen.

It did.

or not
I will cut a very long, boring and intensely frustrating story down to its bare bones for you. PC World messed up. Again. I drove to Slough and back twice to get it booked in for a repair. I got texts to say it was ready. I went back to PC World to pick it up (cue further clenching and just knowing something would have gone wrong) to be met with blank stares. Nope, it's not here. We don't know why, or where it is or when it will get here and (subtext) we clearly don't care either. We'll phone you when it gets here (subtext) so go away now please. I went on the online repair tracker thing. Oh, we need to speak to you about your repair please call us. I called them. Oh yes, there is a note, to say it wasn't delivered yesterday. YES, thank you, I'm aware of this. sigh. Why? Don't know. When will it be delivered. Don't know. oh, actually tomorrow. No, Thursday. Ok. fine thanks. Hang on, any news on how the repair went. Yes, there's a note. We managed to recover all the data, no problem. Super, what about the repair? Oh, we haven't repaired it.


we know how to annoy you. a lot.

It got worse after that but it was painful enough the first time so will spare you.

Those of you who know me can imagine perfectly well the outburst from me that followed, the cutting sarcasm and abuse I gave the (not bothered) bloke on the end of the phone. Words like shambles, chaotic, incompetence and useless abounded.

Now, I'm trying very hard to be a better person, to be more mindful, to build my own internal resilience and peace of mind (literally) so that I am better equipped to deal with and bounce back from external problems. But I'm sorry, I clearly just haven't reached whatever level of zen one needs to be at to breathe through this level of nonsense.

Although. I did spot a few differences today compared to previous similar episodes:
1. I realised I was being an arse and didn't like it. So stopped...a step forward at least!
2. I did also manage to politely thank the man very kindly for his help...another quite major achievement
3. I did not spend the entire rest of the day fuming and blood boiling over the incident, and got over it almost immediately
4. I realised that my own pre-programming from previous PC World experiences and subsequent negativity around the whole event, starting before it had even begun, probably wasn't helping proceedings so decided to change it and forced myself to believe instead that I accept PC World's processes and that I trust them to do the job well now.
5. I analysed why it was such a problem in the first place and realised it wasn't. It's just mildly inconvenient but it's not the end of the world and it's not going to kill anyone and now, like the buddhist teaching said, having gone someway to clearing my own internal 'unpleasant feelings' around it, the external computer problem no longer seems like such a problem after all.

I can't promise to retain this new state of calm over the incident if it sinks to new depths of ridiculousness, but I will try...in fact, I will start by stating that there will be no further nonsense, I trust it will all go well now, and if it doesn't I will remain unperturbed by it.

However, I really would rather PC World were more like Starbucks. I got a voucher for a free coffee to reward my loyalty. I went in to get it. They greeted me by name, asked if I wanted my usual, congratulated me on my voucher and then asked if my coffee was hot enough or would I like a new one. They asked me how I was and wished me well on my way. 

Perhaps I could now start practicing the law of attraction as well to deal with that one?

What's the major lesson of the day? It is the deeply profound thought that free coffee served by jolly people makes me happy.

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