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Katy L Walsvik

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firewalls
By Katy L Walsvik
Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Rated "G" by the Author.

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I confess I remain a bit of an eejit about computers. I can accept that. (grin)

Ah, the firewall.  What it is can be confusing to a computer eejit, such as meself.  But knowing what it is came later... first, I needed to know WHERE it is and how to find it and stop it from causing me trouble with my first, $25.00, used (you're kidding?) computer. 

It was a lovely spring day and the excitement of actually having my first computer had grown to a genuine flutter.  I'd been told by seasoned 'puter users that I was smart enough to figure out the basics... that it would soon be "2nd nature" to roam the net, and that within days, I'd be speaking like a machine, myself.  Hah!  Again, I say: HAH!  "speaking like a machine,' normally enough to make me argue, was lost in the wonder and mistaken belief that I, too, would soon be "computer literate."  All I heard was that word literate and, armed with my love of all things literate, I sat down and flipped the switch.  (Good grief... that sounds like the death penalty!)   But on we go.......

Having dial-up (I know, I know, nevermind that) and having entered my personally created "user name" and "password" (a SECRET word, at that...very cool) and chose to do something I don't  even remember,  up popped a little square box calling itself an "error message." 

"Error Message?"  What?!  It's MY personal name, MY personal password.  Mr. error message, get off my screen!  But I read on... and it said I was being stopped by this rude intrusion because of a Firewall. 

Well, you can count on the fact that I would get to the bottom of this!  I took action.

First, I ran into the yards, front and back, looking for any sort of brick thing or wooden, I didn't care.  Some kind of structure, even if small, was ruining my ability to return to work the next day entirely armed with computer expertise WHICH I would have mastered on my own, being smart enough and all.  Harrumph!

I found nothing.  Catching a neighbor coming outside, I explained my problem and asked if he could point out anything in the vicinity that is/might be one of these firewall thingys. 

His response couldn't have more rude.  Generally a nice enough person, he looked right at me, stood his ground and replied straight to my face: "Are you kidding?"  Then he chuckled... CHUCKLED!  He ran back inside and I could hear him sharing his infuriating response to a roommate, obviously with the same demented sense of humor, not to mention a swift forgiver of rudeness.

Again, harrumph!  I went in, picked up the phone, and called the fire dept.  Obviously, if it's something called a firewall I must adjust to or rid myself of, calling the fire dept. would be a good place to start.  (I now knew I had been wrong about that neighbor by now). 

"Yes, ma'am, how may I help you."  This was the voice of someone with a bit of age, and therefore, wisdom... plus, he was there to help.  My tax dollars paid him and I was now making full use of his duties to citizens.

"Hi," I said, excited to finally get this show on the road. 

I explained, in detail, what my situation was and how he could, of course, be of help.  I thought the line had gone dead.  Back at me came, not laughter, not chuckling (remind me never to chuckle again!) but a louder version of the man I envisioned with white hair and age spots.

"Are you  kidding?"  Now I was quiet. These were familiar words, only recently uttered by my smirking neighbor.   Is this a conspiracy?   A plot?  Has the entire city entered into a promise to whack my efforts to become a computer genius?   Aha!  It's a practical joke.  

Ring... ring... ring... "hello?"  

"You did this on purpose, didn't you?  You put them up to this!  I'm sufficiently frustrated so please call them off."  These were the accusations of a normally sane, smiley, easy-going woman... er, em, hmmmmmm... ME.

"What?  Who is this?"  

It hadn't occurred to me that my voice was not recognizable.  He had my attention.

"Katy?  What's up?"

I filled him in on the whole frustrating morning I'd had and, yes, had to admit that I wasn't going to become a computer genius overnight... so could he please, if he wouldn't mind, tell me where this godforsaken, intrusive, ellusive thing called a firewall is so I can stop it from messing with my online experience.

He told me.

Long pause.... then... I laughed, guffawed, howled, wept in humor and yes, chuckled. 

Ah, the firewall.  What it is can be confusing to a computer eejit, such as meself.  But knowing what it is came later... first, I needed to know WHERE it is and how to find it and stop it from causing me trouble with my first, $25.00, used (you're kidding?) computer. 

It was a lovely spring day and the excitement of actually having my first computer had grown to a genuine flutter.  I'd been told by seasoned 'puter users that I was smart enough to figure out the basics... that it would soon be "2nd nature" to roam the net, and that within days, I'd be speaking like a machine, myself.  Hah!  Again, I say: HAH!  "speaking like a machine,' normally enough to make me argue, was lost in the wonder and mistaken belief that I, too, would soon be "computer literate."  All I heard was that word literate and, armed with my love of all things literate, I sat down and flipped the switch.  (Good grief... that sounds like the death penalty!)   But on we go.......

Having dial-up (I know, I know, nevermind that) and having entered my personally created "user name" and "password" (a SECRET word, at that...very cool) and chose to do something I don't  even remember,  up popped a little square box calling itself an "error message." 

"Error Message?"  What?!  It's MY personal name, MY personal password.  Mr. error message, get off my screen!  But I read on... and it said I was being stopped by this rude intrusion because of a Firewall. 

Well, you can count on the fact that I would get to the bottom of this!  I took action.

First, I ran into the yards, front and back, looking for any sort of brick thing or wooden, I didn't care.  Some kind of structure, even if small, was ruining my ability to return to work the next day entirely armed with computer expertise WHICH I would have mastered on my own, being smart enough and all.  Harrumph!

I found nothing.  Catching a neighbor coming outside, I explained my problem and asked if he could point out anything in the vicinity that is/might be one of these firewall thingys. 

His response couldn't have more rude.  Generally a nice enough person, he looked right at me, stood his ground and replied straight to my face: "Are you kidding?"  Then he chuckled... CHUCKLED!  He ran back inside and I could hear him sharing his infuriating response to a roommate, obviously with the same demented sense of humor, not to mention a swift forgiver of rudeness.

Again, harrumph!  I went in, picked up the phone, and called the fire dept.  Obviously, if it's something called a firewall I must adjust to or rid myself of, calling the fire dept. would be a good place to start.  (I now knew I had been wrong about that neighbor by now). 

"Yes, ma'am, how may I help you."  This was the voice of someone with a bit of age, and therefore, wisdom... plus, he was there to help.  My tax dollars paid him and I was now making full use of his duties to citizens.

"Hi," I said, excited to finally get this show on the road. 

I explained, in detail, what my situation was and how he could, of course, be of help.  I thought the line had gone dead.  Back at me came, not laughter, not chuckling (remind me never to chuckle again!) but a louder version of the man I envisioned with white hair and age spots.

"Are you  kidding?"  Now I was quiet. These were familiar words, only recently uttered by my smirking neighbor.   Is this a conspiracy?   A plot?  Has the entire city entered into a promise to whack my efforts to become a computer genius?   Aha!  It's a practical joke.  

Ring... ring... ring... "hello?"  

"You did this on purpose, didn't you?  You put them up to this!  I'm sufficiently frustrated so please call them off."  These were the accusations of a normally sane, smiley, easy-going woman... er, em, hmmmmmm... ME.

"What?  Who is this?"  

It hadn't occurred to me that my voice was not recognizable.  He had my attention.

"Katy?  What's up?"

I filled him in on the whole frustrating morning I'd had and, yes, had to admit that I wasn't going to become a computer genius overnight... so could he please, if he wouldn't mind, tell me where this godforsaken, intrusive, ellusive thing called a firewall is so I can stop it from messing with my online experience.

He told me.

Long pause.... then... I laughed, guffawed, howled, wept in humor and yes, chuckled. 

 

 

 


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Reviewed by Ronald Hull 7/15/2008
A familiar tale of woe, only you wrote it so well!

RRo
Reviewed by Karen Vanderlaan 7/15/2008
too dang funny--well written!
Reviewed by Leland Waldrip 7/15/2008
Hi Katy:
Great story! I, too, have had my problems with firewalls -- and with duplicate text in the middle of my stuff. Don't know if the computer was playing tricks on you or you were playing tricks on us. LOL Anyway, I loved the story.
Love and {{{hugs}}}
Leland
Reviewed by Karen Lynn Vidra, The Texas Tornado 7/15/2008
Don't ask ME, Katy; don't know much about computers myself. Sorry. Still, a good write; good luck! Will pray that your probs are absolved soon!

(((HUGS))) and much love, your friend in Tx., Karen Lynn. :D
Reviewed by Ed Matlack 7/15/2008
Well, first of all I almost read it twice but after a few seconds of reading the second version of the same story, I finally realized how much of an eejit I was too...anyway, it is good to see you be able to post something, but have you figured it out, the intricacies of computer ownership or is it the otherway around, as it owns you...keep tryin' as it is hard to get help with just email...take care and good luck, Ed & Rufuz
Reviewed by Karla Dorman, The StormSpinner 7/15/2008
I'm an eedjit when it comes to computers, too, Katy, TRUST me. LOL You're not alone. An excellent self-depreciating write - well done.

So nice to see you posting again - I've missed you!

(((HUGS))) and love, Karla.

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