With Don and Kim, the playground bullies, engaged in a mighty pissing contest, it may come as a surprise to learn of a recent major catastrophe which received shockingly little attention in the media, namely the loss of my computer. I hasten to reassure you – it should be back next Wednesday, fully intact. I could have had it back earlier, but tomorrow is a public holiday because Mary did something amazing, so the French take Monday off too. They call this ‘faire le pont’ – making the bridge – which I thoroughly approved of when I did it myself, but now lament as it leaves me without my laptop.
I thought at first it was a very spectacular virus, one which takes control of everything and makes the computer go haywire, refusing all instructions, opening and shutting windows, programmes, pages of code, beeping and flashing like a manic pinball machine. So it came as a relief to be told that the problem was far more prosaic: dust. Snuggling down inside the keyboard and setting off a crate of fireworks all at once.
They didn’t tell me what sort of dust, but given that our garden looks pretty much like the Gobi desert right now, I suspect that might have something to do with it. On the other hand, I like the idea that it could be a form of cosmic dust, within which, if you look closely, you’ll find a few particles that used to be… well, I thought Shakespeare would be asking too much, so I settled for Gustave Flaubert. I rang the computer wizards to ask if they could remove all the bits of hair, skin, mites and Gobi desert but leave Gustave in there. Unfortunately not, they said, as they have to replace the whole keyboard. Oh, well. At least I know I’ll have to use the dust-remover pressurised air thingy a bit more often in future. That’s if the bullies don’t blow us all up in the meantime.