It Wasn’t the Mouse

More on the runaway cursor:

Best Buys was packed–it was a Saturday, eight days before Christmas.  I parked in a far corner and joined the throng.  Somehow, I found the mouses (mice?) without help.  Most of them were many colors–greens, pinks, reds–but I wanted plain black.  There was one.

I had expected to find “directions” on the packaging–I wanted to know I could use the damn thing when I got it home.  There were words and symbols, none of which provided any reassurance.  The words were in English and French and Spanish and Portuguese, and the symbols were meaningless.  A young lady, maybe 18 years old, sidled up to me.  “Can I help you?” she said.

“How does this thing work?”

She was puzzled for a moment.  “It just–works.  You push the stick into the port and off you go.”

Sticks and ports were barely in my computer vocabulary.  “Everything I need is in this package?”

“Yes, sir.”

I couldn’t think of anything else to ask, so I paid for it and left.  All the way home I chastised myself for not getting her to provide more detail.  After opening the package, I searched in vain for the stick that was supposed to be there.  There were no words to help me, only more pictures that communicated nothing.  About to give up, I pressed something that opened the mouse and there it was.

Almost giddy, I pushed the stick into a port and rebooted the computer and, lo and behold, it did work.  I went happily back to my manuscript and, ten minutes later, the 0s began again.  Almost weeping, I consulted the Internet once more with the assistance of my new wireless mouse.  One of the posts (three pages in) seemed relatively simple so I decided to try it.  It involved unchecking boxes in the control panel, a ten-second task that took me ten minutes.

I pulled up the manuscript again and the 0s began immediately.  About to heave the whole thing out the window, I remembered I had not rebooted again.  Et voila.  No more 0s.  So far.

Fingers crossed.


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