When A Trip to the Genius Bar Leads to More Questions than Answers

Two days ago, I found myself at the Genius Bar in the Apple Store. My computer has been protesting any request with a festive pinwheel rainbow of revolution.

It was not having it. Any simple request was met with that gleeful pinwheel of protest. Load a website? No. Open a document? No. It was completely uninterested in answering my pleas and I’ll be honest I was getting desperate. I felt on the brink of tears that these simple things seemed imposible. I couldn’t write. I couldn’t read. I could barely scroll through Facebook, which I was quite honestly less sad about.

Of course, the guy at the Genius Bar found a flaw in my software. The hard drive was fine but there was something quirky about the software. The best solution to this problem was to wipe damn thing of any memory. It would need be scrubbed clean in order to function correctly.

And so, this guy set about baptizing my laptop as I punched my frustrated prayers into the notes on my iPhone. There were several steps involved in this process. It wasn’t one dunk or one smooth action. There were bumps along the way that made the guy at the Genius bar turn and tenderly ask me, “Do you really want to do this?”

Each time, like a godparent of God’s beloved, I felt the need to proclaim my faith. I trusted him. I trusted God, maybe. Was this even about God or was it more my sincere hope that God would somehow intervene?

It’s a machine. Of course, it’s a machine and the guy might not be a genius but I did really want to do this. Each and every time, I said yes. I proclaimed my faith. I dared to hope even if I would lose all of my data. There wasn’t really any stored there anyway. It was all in the cloud, I think. So it was wiped. It was made clean. It was born again. Alleluia!

The protests have stopped, but my feelings have not. It’s just a machine. It shouldn’t matter that much. It doesn’t have feelings. It is not an insolent child, but a piece of hardware that may or may not be smarter than I am. Since its baptism, my wit has been challenged by remembering every password. I had to reinstall some software, that I hope will not ruin the spirit of the converted that my laptop may or not feel.

It is just a machine. Of course, it’s just a machine but the question that was asked repeatedly at the Genius Bar still echoes in my mind, “Do you really want to do this?”

Do I want to risk change? It’s not a question for the machine but a question that digs ay my own soul. Do I want to be made well? Do I want to do the tasks assigned to me? Or do I want to make my own way? Do I want to chart my own path no matter what software may have been installed?

Do I really want to do this? Do I want to go back to the way that it was when it was all fresh and new? It seemed pretty great then, I guess. Or at least that’s what the campaign slogan claimed.

Or do I want something else? Maybe even something better.

This is my seventh post for #52essays2017 shared here. You can find more of my words over on my blog cookingwithelsa.org.