REAY JESPERSEN:
WRITER OF, AND DABBLER IN,
MANY THINGS

Technology hates me and now grass does, too

I’ve long had a love/hate relationship with technology. By which I mean, I love it and it hates me.

I need to clarify at this point to those who don’t know me, or don’t know about this side of me: I don’t mean that in some cutesy way like I’d put on a dating app profile (“Cats and dogs love me but technology hates me LOL”), but more like in a way where unlikely technological misfortune has… what’s a good word for it?… ah, yes… plagued me.

I’ve gone through countless laptops and phones, wifi units and wifi extenders, desktop components and cable boxes, from bargain to brand name, recommended by friends to recommended by reviews of total strangers… it doesn’t matter. If it’s electronic, it’s a fair bet that I’ll do it in.

This isn’t to say that all technology dies on me all the time, of course, but rather that a vastly disproportionate amount of it does.

Hey, remember you got that phone brand recommended by a friend and after a while the GPS just stopped working sometimes (which is evidently a thing)? Or the time that not one, but two Chromebooks each worked for two weeks and then stopped working because they maybe just didn’t like your wifi setup that you couldn’t do anything about? Or the time you thought you’d get your wife’s new laptop up and running for her, so you took it out of the box and turned it on and plugged it in and there was a pop and a burning smell and the screen went black and it wouldn’t turn back on and the people at the store said they’d never seen that happen before?

Yep, yep, and yep…

On this very platform not 24 hours ago, I took about an hour to write and fiddle with a new blog entry and I specifically saved it as a draft in order that I could tweak it a bit more today and post it. Yet when I went into the draft folder today, the only draft in there—the one I’d written—was blank. Not a title on it any more, and zero in the body content. And while I went through the steps to hit up tech support in the hopes that they may be able to pull something from an automated backup, or whatever, I was informed their system doesn’t do that, and they can’t find hide nor hair of my draft content. It’s effectively like I didn’t write anything at all.

Which isn’t to speak ill of them or their system so much as my ongoing experience with technology. Had saving the draft and going back to it later worked, that would’ve been great. That it didn’t do so comes as a disappointment but hardly a surprise.

Yes, I love the cool stuff technology can do and want to be able to use those tools for good (and sure, also for playing some sweet games on), but years—nay, decades—of experience have shown that a bizarre amount of the time, at best, tech only tolerates me, and at worst it would rather commit some kind of digital harikari than work for me.

A new twist, though: I’m increasingly finding that while some of the newest stuff on the planet hates me, some of the oldest may, as well.

Grass.

Grass is old. I mean, ancient. Grass way pre-dates dinosaurs, and they’re… like… mega old.

Grass will take over everything if you give it a chance to. It’ll grow in the cracks of sidewalks and will lie dormant under feet of Canadian snow, patiently biding its time until it gets a hint of sun again, and then it’ll grow half a foot in a couple of weeks. It’s goddamn tenacious. You can’t keep it down.

And yet…

We have some patches in our lawns that need more grass growing there, and over years, I’ve tried numerous name brand products to get grass to grow. It very rarely works for me.

To be fair, I don’t give the seeds the full coddling that the directions advise. That’s largely because one of the first times I tried it out, I thought it was ridiculous that I was expected to keep the grass seed damp every day for three weeks.

Three weeks? Are you kidding me? You’ve been around for the better part of a billion years, and you’re not going to survive here and now unless I give you a soaking for 500 hours straight? Get a grip, grass.

Salt was rubbed in the wound further when we noticed grass growing between the slats of our raised deck.

To clarify: I lay down top soil, dust on fertilizer and grass seed—I’m talking name brands that claim that their grass will grow on plain concrete—rake it together and then give it a decent watering (I’m not going to do it for three weeks straight, but I’ll give it a drink to start with; I’m not a monster), and still get nothing.

Meanwhile, unasked, grass will happily grow between wood slats of a deck where it doesn’t get any of that soil or nutrients?

Now it’s just messing with me.

What I'm listening to

First lawn mowing of the year