Thursday, August 13, 2009

Every Cloud

The upshot of our recent break-in is that I now have a brand spankin' new MacBook Pro laptop and I LOVE it with every fibre of my being. I had been coveting one for some months. I'm not sure where the longing to convert to Mac rather than PC originated from but in the past year or so I have become aware of friend's almost zealous conversions and I think that is where the seed germinated.

Everything about this machine is sleek and minimalist and oh so easy-peasy-lemon-squeezy to use. It is giving me the illusion of being almost competent in areas that used to terrify me and that I would have a tendency to avoid like the plague. For example, the downloading of photographs. Now, nobody in their right mind would accuse me of giving (insert famous photographer's name of your preference) a run for their money. I am no Annie Liebowitz. I am very much a point and shoot gal. And I can point and shoot as good as the next person until the cows come home. However, ask me, since the digital revolution, to then actually do something useful with these photos - for example, download them, categorise them into organised folders for ease of reference, upload them to Facebook, email favourites to family and then, heaven's alive, actually print some of them to display in my home - and that's where I would become slightly unglued.

So it was with some trepidation that I tentatively wedged my camera's memory card into the new Love of My Life yesterday and waited with baited breath for the illusion of my new found competence to come crashing around my ears. However, in the blink of an eye the iPhoto application opened, welcomed me with an intro video (which I admit I ignored due to the roaring in my ears and floating specks in front of my eyes, caused by low level anxiety) and before my body had time to create sweat on the palm of my hands my photos were downloaded, automatically categorised into events by date and I was one click away from uploading them to Facebook. Bloody genius. Not genius enough to actually feature a selection of my impressive photographic repertoire on this blog of course...but it is early days.

My new TV also arrived yesterday. And not just any old tele, oh no. A multi-regional TV no less. So now when I move home next year the TV in my possession as of this moment actually has a chance of working, rather than being discarded for peanuts stateside and having to be replaced for more than peanuts in Blighty. (Assuming of course the bastards don't return a week from now and nick my shiny new replacements...not gonna happen, not gonna happen, not gonna happen repeat to fade.)

Only two other items appear to have been taken - my Tag watch and my wedding ring. Both of which had been unceremoniously slung into the Kitchen Drawer of Tat, due to the Tag needing a new battery (which I had been meaning to get replaced for months) and the ring having been removed over 2 years ago but not yet relegated to the Jewellery Box Containing Stuff I Never Wear in the bathroom. I should feel sad about both. And maybe in time I will. But instead I just feel irritated with myself for being so careless and laissez-faire - it's been a common trait in my life, born from a natural tendency to laziness, and one that my ex particularly despised. When I discovered the watch and ring were missing I could almost hear his voice in my head, "Well, what did you expect? You never did appreciate or show a decent respect for the value of anything I have ever bought you..." It would be pointless to defend myself because the evidence of stuff I have broken, lost and mislaid over the years is just too damning to refute. I am an excellent receiver of valuable gifts. Just not so good a keeper of said gifts. Yet one more thing to work on, along with the countless other less noble traits I exhibit on a frequent basis.

Needless to say, the watch and the ring are not going to be replaced. In fact, if there is money left over from the insurance then it will go towards replacing my ex's Tag, which went missing when we moved back to Chicago 3 years ago. The official version of the story is that the removal men must have stolen it when packing up the kitchen (yes, his watch had also been unceremoniously dumped into the Birmingham Kitchen Drawer of Tat...although of course this is no reflection of his lack of appreciation or respect for items of sentimental and monetary value).

However, in all truth I rather suspect that I inadvertently threw his watch away. Now, I can't be hand-on-heart sure about this. But there was one particular box of kitchen 'essentials' that was getting a little bit laborious to unpack and find a home for. It contained the contents of several Kitchen Drawers of Tat. (They're like rabbits aren't they? Once you have one then they just tend to multiply without your permission until, one day, only the drawer containing cutlery is sacrament and even that has a tendency to be infiltrated by odd coins, paper clips, rubber bands and plasters if you're not constantly on your guard.)

Anyway, there I was, diligently unwrapping several layers of paper - like the most unrewarding and relentless pass-the-parcel game in the world - to reveal a small rock that the boys had deemed irreplaceable, or the dismembered hand of an action figure, or 4 pens which no longer functioned, or a broken plastic lid for a container that had long since been binned. This particular box stood approximately 4 feet high and by the time I had unwrapped half of these 'treasures' I had lost the will, if not to live, then certainly to waste my time unwrapping any more. So I simply dumped the remains of it. I thought nothing more about it.

A couple of days later ex asked me in passing, "have you come across my watch yet?". Er, nope. Where was it? In your bedside table with your cufflinks? "No, I'd left it in that kitchen drawer, under the microwave. I was going to get the battery replaced but hadn't gotten round to it."



Needless to say, I never confessed to even the possibility that my tardiness had potentially played a role in the disappearance of his valuable timepiece. And so now, if there is any opportunity to make it up to him, and replace this watch, then I will take it gratefully and with no regret for my losses - because I have the new Love of My Life and right now that's good enough for me.


  1. First of all, sorry about your break in. Secondly, you lucky girl getting a new computer. And a MacBook at that. Swoon.
    I have been wearing my Tag without a working battery for three months. In my life it has been 10.22. I eventually took it to the jewellers yesterday, it took two minutes to replace and cost 5pounds. I was embarrassed by myself. I have also lost my wedding ring. We are one and the same...

  2. I don't so much have kitchen drawers of Tat, and I don't have a problem with looking after or finding the things that I own. But I do own a load of old toot. I wish I had a Tag to lose. And then I could claim on the insurance and... well, trade it in for a load of old toot, probably... x

  3. I have no idea where my watch is, probably in the kitchen drawers of tat that are currently in a plastic bag whilst drawer of tat has its front glued back on. If we had more drawers, there would be more drawers of tat. Thank everyone for small mercies.

    Yay for glossy new laptop. Being as technical as I am I have no idea what a MacPro is, but all sounds good to me.

  4. Ah, that old 'the removal men / the plumber / the builder / god knows who must have stolen it' excuse. Don't feel bad; HE lost it, not you. And if you replace it, then he'll guess you'll feel responsible for it's disappearance, more importantly. (Plus, after everything that's happened, does he really deserve a new Tag?). I may be a nasty old bat, but I say spend the cash on a really good bag or a very nice pair of shoes...(You know I don't mean it. Much.)

  5. You might enjoy the blog Confessions of a Pioneer Woman - if you don't already. She has a section on photography, as well as being a darn good read.

  6. I'm glad you're enjoying your MacBook and the new telly. As you say, something good came out of the break-in at least.

    There are no kitchen drawers of tat in my kitchen. Well, there are no kitchen drawers actually. When we moved in 12 years ago the kitchen was falling to pieces and the previous family had broken all the drawers (how?) and guess what? I still have the same kitchen without day, I'll get a new kitchen.

  7. Sorry to hear about your break-in, but... hurray for new stuff!!

    I don't have a drawer of tat so much as an entire room. Supposedly Kai's nursery but since he's never in there it's become the place that forgotten junk goes to die. One day I am going to sort out that room, make a fortune on ebay and... probably buy more junk. But nice shiny NEW junk! One day.

  8. I would love an imac- I love my iphone

  9. I guess the burglars did you a favour if you got a new Mac out of it!
    Just where does one buy a multi-region TV in the US? I'd like one, with multi-region DVD to go with it.

  10. Confused Take That - Hilarious! Makes me feel like slightly less of a baffoon. And yes, I am still swooning...

    KR - One (wo)man's toot is another (wo)man's treasure perhaps?

    Fraught Mummy - Hello! Did the drawer fall apart due to the incredible acreage of tat? If so I am very impressed! So now you have carrier bags of tat...but tell me, do you have a carrier bag bag? You know, the kind of posh carrier bag that all the other less substantial carrier bags are housed in??

    Potty Mummy - You know what - you're right. If there is money remaining out of the insurance money (which is yet to materialise) then I will make sure it is split. I've got to stop feeling so damn responsible for every thing where ex is concerned...thanks for the reminder.

    Iota - wow - love the photos on her blog. thanks for pointing me in her direction

    Notsupermum - then I am curious....where oh where is all your tat???

    Josie - Thanks for the comment. Oh, I also have a room full of ol' toot. It's called the play room. I try to avoid it at all possible cost. Unfortunately, so do the boys.

    Lakeland Jo - OOH I would love an iPhone!!!!

    Almost American - I bought my gear from The order arrived the next day. They sell tvs and dvds and were very helpful over the phone. I do already have a multiregional dvd and it is a godsend.