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Teen Talk

April 7, 2012

Teenhood Today: You, too, can overcome technological difficulties

I was planning on writing about stress. However, in the middle of writing it my computer died and that column disappeared into the other dimension.

Ironic? The screen went black, the pulsing light that is ALWAYS on turned off, and I'm pretty sure I heard funeral music playing.

I panicked. The last time I backed it up was during the Ice Age (when I was afraid that I might lose my pictures of dodo birds and mammoths making snow angels with man-eating plants).

I had everything on that computer. My science labs, my songs, by unfinished books. Everything! And I lost it.

I did the only logical thing. I yelled for Mom. After calmly getting a brownie, eating the brownie, and finishing whatever she was doing, she walked up the stairs and diagnosed the problem as a-real-bummer-and-she-hopes-that-I-recently-backed-up-my-computer. How helpful.

There was a lot of nail-biting, praying and chanting, "I think I can, I think I can, I think I can" from everyone's favorite children's story. Then after Mom pushed the "power" button, the pulsing light began to pulse, the funeral music stopped, and the screen turned blue. Yes!

I am now writing on the old computer and clicking the "save" button after every word. The other dimension is not getting this column too!

I can almost guarantee that every single one of you has experienced some technological difficulty in your life. Am I right?

I have wracked my brain and skimmed through dictionaries (to find "sophisticated" wording) to come up with tips for some common times when the human race has been tormented by technology.

Tip No. 1:

When you've written a 9,000-page paper on the anatomy of a cow's eye and lightning strikes your house, sending huge amounts of electricity through your computer and causing your paper to fly into the other dimension, don't panic. The inspiration will come again.

Instead of grabbing your baseball bat and sending pieces of your computer on extended vacations around the world, take a deep breath. Grab some ice cream. Count to 1,500. Eat some more ice cream. Go to a farm and stare into a cow's eye for three hours, regaining all lost inspiration. Raid the freezer once again. Don't panic.

Tip No. 2:

The time change rolls around twice a year. When you forget to reset your clocks and show up to the biggest event of your life (fill that in with something that is life-changing for you) late (or early), don't throw the clock. You're not going to make time fly and you might find out that clocks work like boomerangs and will come back to hit you in the head. Try this instead: move the big hand forward or backward one hour.

Tip No. 3:

Pretend that you've been waiting for months to get your favorite movie from Netflix. It finally comes. You put it in the DVD player and click "power." Nothing happens. You check and double check everything. Sure enough, your player is fried.

What do you do? Certainly not eat ice cream. Be angry. Throw something. You've waited months!

Everyone experiences technical difficulties. You just have to know how to respond to them.

Miriam A. Thurber is a freshman at Unatego Central School. ‘Teen Talk’ columns can be found at


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