By Alkali Springs Correspondent
This column has made a drastic step although if that step is forward or not remains to be seen. To ask us now, the answer would be it is a step into the dark ages.
Let us explain. For the first ten or fifteen or twenty years this column has been in existence, we hand wrote it and our dear mother would try to translate our writing into something she could actually read, type it into a manuscript and get it back to us in time for the Havre Daily News to use it.
Then several years ago we graduated into a word processor which after we learned to use it, and after completely wiping out several columns during power failures and the like and not knowing that the fancy machine even had a memory, after all that we have become quite comfortable processing our words each week for you as it were.
But still all was not well. We wanted the capability to take pictures and print them ourselves, to take a simple sort of word processor with us so that we could write when on the shore of Lake McDonald or sitting on the top of Mount Otis.
So we bought a computer. A lap top and since that time our world has been frustrated, aggravated and not really worth the powder to blow it up. We spend hours and hours and hours trying to get something written on the computer only to lose it completely and apparently not due to anything we did (other than to have sluggish and lazy fingers who at times might lay for a millisecond on a key where they are not supposed to be. We can be writing along and all of a sudden we are back up in a sentence three paragraphs ago, completely ruining that part of the column. Why, we have spent hours and hours correcting what we have already written and again and again see it disappear into oblivion no matter how many times we push the save button. And we believe what a friend told us, that the half dozen or so stories we have lost are all there yet, somewhere. We just have not been able to find them.
Then there is the lap top function on our lap top. We cannot get comfortable with it, no matter where it sits, on our lap, on a table, on a TV tray or wherever. It is not easy for us to operate.
We must say, though, that the picture downloading capability is great and has been a lot of fun. It is just that we can't make a living taking pictures and downloading them.
Then there is the Internet. We thought it was going to be the answer to all our problems for when we got an expert to hook us up to that, he would give us some lessons in running our computer in general.
'We got lessons all right. But not the kind that we needed in order to make a living.
We can turn on the Internet, find a search engine and spend some time "surfing the net" as some would say. The only complaint is that so far our surfing has been costly and not made us any wiser, more healthy or wealthy.
And still we are trying to figure out what our expert was talking about when he told us how he works his computer. May we quote.
"The reason I am such an expert and my friends all wonder how I can get places so fast as I write mouse click. If you do that you will soon get as good as me."
"Where do you write mouse click, on the keyboard?" we asked.
"What's the matter with you?" he asked. "You simply write mouse click. You hear me? "Write mouse click."
'WHERE!!!!!!!!" we screamed. We didn't have to throw him out of the house, he was leaving anyway and we are at least hearkened by one ray of hope, if we ever do learn where to write mouse click, we will have entered the computer age and mastered our fancy machine and our columns will improve as well.