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This morning was a comedy of errors

So I am currently at the Human Behavior and Evolution Conference meeting in Williamsburg, VA. My laptop's wireless card will not connect to W&M's wireless network, so after breakfast I walk over to the IT center to see if someone can help. A technician works on it for about an hour, but in the middle of download of a new driver, the building alarm goes off and there is a strong smell of natural gas.

Outside, I ask the technician if there is another building on campus where I can connect by Ethernet cable to try the driver download again, and she suggests the library. The one problem is that I don't have the ethernet cable I always carry with me because I loaned it to my son 2 days ago. I figure I'll beg for one at the library's front desk, and they tell me that they cannot risk lending a cable to someone who is now a member of the W&M community because they would be liable if my laptop was damaged.


They suggested I go back to the reference desk, because they might be able to help me. None of this makes sense, but I do it anyway, and the woman says she thinks she might have a cable in the back. She returns without a cable and suggests I go to the front desk. I explain that they sent me here, and she says, well, they are getting a phone call right now saying they can lend me a cable because it is an extraordinary circumstance. Indeed, I can see them waving the cable from across the library.

Borrowed cable in hand, I go find a port, connect, download the driver, and start to install when the alarm goes off in the library. Same problem, natural gas, which is now blowing all over this side of campus. Police and firemen herd everyone off campus and I am now on the opposite side of campus from where I want to be. I walk all the way around the perimeter to find that the conference center, upwind, is totally unaffected. I boot up my laptop, it now connects, which is why I can post this message.


( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 3rd, 2007 03:31 am (UTC)
It sounds like it was a frustrating experience. But, at least in the end you got connected and that is what you set out to do.

Okay, so then what is the moral of the story? Perseverance prevails? Don't leave your house without your ethernet cable? Now, I am going to be sure and buy one so I always have it with me.

This reminds me of the time my car wouldn't start in the dead of winter at Wal-Mart, and I didn't have my jumper cables because I had loaned them to my son. After freezing for about an hour and asking every one I saw if they could give me a jump, I went into the store and bought another pair of jumper cables because no one I asked had any. Then, I waited until a few of the parking spaces across from me were empty. You will never believe what I did then. (And, this was around xmas when the parking lot was full.) I blocked the entrance to those parking spaces with shopping carts. Then, with jumper cables in hand, I "interviewed" the drivers who were hunting for a parking space and moved the shopping carts only for those who would give me a jump. Perseverance prevailed!

BTW, hope you enjoyed the conference.
Jun. 3rd, 2007 03:36 am (UTC)
The conference has been good.

The moral of the story is, when you need help, ask for it.

One of my favorite moments at the conference was the day after I solved the wireless problem, when I made a special point of going back to the computer support center just to thank the technician for the help she gave me.
Jun. 3rd, 2007 03:47 am (UTC)
The moral of the story is, when you need help, ask for it.

I will remember that.

And, I will always remember to make that special point to say thank you.
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )