In the Cloud

About a week ago my MacBook started doing something alarming. As I was typing along, the screen would suddenly go dark. Not completely black – I could still see my desktop, but too dark to see what I was typing. If I shut down and restarted, it was fine – for a while. After a few days of this, it stopped being fine, even for a while.

MacBooks aren’t supposed to do alarming things. Annoying things, perhaps. Sometimes the beachball of doom spins endlessly until I force an unresposive app to quit, but that’s easily fixable. No permanent damage.

Having a too-dark screen doesn’t leave many possibilities for noodling around, trying to figure out a fix. So I went to visit the geniuses.

I had never been to the Mac Store before. It’s not like other stores – no aisles, just large tables where customers played with iPads and Macbook Airs. At the back of the store was a long bar with stools. Customers were seated on the stools, and blue-shirted geniuses behind the bar typed into Macbook Pros. There was no paper anywhere.

Before I could brace myself for frustration, a smiling genius approached me, carrying an iPad. “Do you have an appointment?” he asked.

I did not have an appointment. I should have known that geniuses do not speak to mortals without an appointment, but I had foolishly assumed that since macs rarely need service, there would be nobody in line.  More

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