Life is music
Music is poetry
Poetry is rhythm
Rhythm is movement
Movement is dance
Dance is feeling
Feeling is life.
The circle of life
Is not to live and die,
It is to live and live.
When we think about what we want and what we need (see previous post), one of the things we have decided is that it might be nice to have less stuff. Perhaps a lot less stuff. Maybe not minimalist in the true sense of the idea, but living a life that is less complex appeals to us on many levels.
We can envision living in a modest home, on a fair stretch of land surrounded by mother nature (ie, not a lot of other houses), with a garden to tend and in close proximity to some areas which would make it convenient to do some cool outdoorsy activities such as hiking and biking and so forth.
We have never owned a dog. When we were young our Mom had a dog. She had several - Munchkin, Teddy, Fritz, and now Punkie. But we’ve never had one of our own. We think if we ever have that humble house among the hills, we will also have some big dog that can hang out with us and go on adventures and pretend to be human with us.
The dog will have plenty of space to run around outside, and when we want, he or she will be in the house with us, protecting us and taking up too much space on the bed. If we want to travel into town to get supplies, they will want to ride along, and for sure if we go exploring, they will want to do that too. It’s fun to think about.
And we all think it sounds really grand!
Spoiler alert - this long and arduous post is all about printers, but there are lessons to be learned. Plus, in the end there’s a turkey pot pie. If any of that interests you, carry on…
So we decided recently that it’s time to get a new printer. We have had the same printer for about 10 years, which originally came free with the purchase of some shitty PC. It does one thing and one thing only - and that’s print. It’s a Cannon Pixma 1600 (or something like that), and it has served us well. We’ve been through several PC’s, Laptops, Netbooks, yadda-yadda and it is probably the one piece of “technology” we have had the longest that is still working just like the day we got it.
Two things that really got us thinking we “need” a new printer. The first is that we want to be able to scan some pictures, documents, etc, which we currently can’t do and the other thing is this Pixma only get’s used once in a blue moon, so often times when we go to use it, the ink has dried up.
So the quest began. We spent about an hour researching printers/reviews and decided from that exercise that some inkjet that was an “all in 1” device was the answer. We would get a scanner, copy machine, and printer all in one! Some even advertise that they also do faxing.
/Raises one eyebrow. “Faxing? What the hell is that?!”
This led us to have the brilliant idea in our mind that we could even print pictures if we wanted to since most of these printers say they can do that. So the next step in our journey was to go to the store and check them out. We went to Best Buy first.
Talking to a human being face to face for us is a much better interaction than trying to read through hundreds of reviews on the never-ending interwebs (most of which by the way are contradictory and no matter the mix, there is always some jerkface out there who has nothing but bad things to say about EVERYTHING). What that means, however, is that we are relying on only one other human beings opinion of the products and brands in question which can be very biased.
The sales person at Best Buy quickly detected that we have an iPhone, and pointed us in the direction of the HPs. Supposedly they have this seamless interface with which they communicate with apple products and we can print from our macbook, ipad, or iphone with a touch of a button. We immediately decided that not only did we want a printer that could scan, copy, print photos, but also communicate wirelessly and speak the same language as many of the other devices we own so all of this would be even easier. In a word, he sold us on the HP and we bought the HP Photosmart 7520.
But wait, the story does not end there. We never opened the box.
The next day we went to Office Max to do some price comparison and get another human being’s opinion on the whole printer scene. As it turns out, that human being gave us completely different information than the one at Best Buy, but we were still convinced that the HP was the way to go, but perhaps not the 7520 but the 6520 instead. In taking a closer look at both models, the 6520 had everything the 7520 had but was cheaper. What it does not have is a top loading document feeder tray, and of all the things we decided we had to have, this was one thing we actually wish was not a feature on the printer we bought because it makes the printer bigger, bulkier, and no doubt more complicated (ie more complicated = more chance something will go wrong).
Then we read more reviews and decided to go back to BestBuy the next day to possibly return the printer and get the 6520. While at the store this time, we did some price comparison, talked to yet another person on the subject, and even forced said person to jump through a lot of hoops to demonstrate how great these HPs really are. Our conclusion, that Best Buy is really not equipped to do demo’s of printers.
We made her get photo paper, and subsequently hijacked almost all of the HPs on display to find ink cartridges that were not empty to put into the 6520. We downloaded the HP Photosmart app, and finally after about 45 minutes of scrambling, we printed a photo from our iPhone. The result was awful! We should have returned the printer right then and there, but in that moment we had paralysis from over-analysis and just turned tail and left.
Then we read more reviews and decided perhaps we should just try out the printer we bought before passing judgement. After all, the store has a 30 day no hassle return policy. But as we sat in a chair at our kitchen table staring at this really rather large box with about zero desire to open it we finally reasoned out that we don’t need a printer.
Reviews we read made us believe we needed one of these all-in-one devices, and we really don’t.
People we talked to made us believe we needed to print things right from our phone, which we really don’t.
Thoughts in our head made us believe that we needed to print pictures which we really don’t.
What we really need is to be able to print, once in a blue moon, which we can do with the Pixma we already have. As for the scanning, we are going to borrow one. Problem solved.
We returned the printer today, and while we feel pretty good about this decision, we are not at all pleased about the hours that we spent getting to this point. Is the lesson learned that we “need” less than we think we do because it is mostly outside influence convincing us what we need? If we get back to basics about what we really need versus what others think we need, will we find we need less? And - do we really even need what we think we need? We might just be mistakenly substituting the word “need” for the word “want” because that is how we are conditioned to think.
Or is the real lesson is that if a process for solving a problem is more complex and taxing than the benefit of solving it, we will just reject it altogether? Perhaps.
/Smirk “How often is once in a blue moon?”
“Shut up and go make me a turkey pot pie”.
We just spent 25 minutes troubleshooting our Ooma. First, the red light was on and nothing else. Then we unplugged and plugged it back in so it would reboot, after which the “trash can” light was on and the center flower was blinking red. We logged into the account on the web to confirm service was good, which it was. We also still had a dial-tone and could make and receive calls. The last step was consulting online help, which led us to download a PDF of the guide which, in-turn, led us to believe we should not have service because that is what a blinking red flower means. And since these facts directly contradicted each other, the only conclusion that could be made for certain is that we must be an idiot.
/Tilts head. “And?”
Turns out, there is a button on the Ooma that controls the brightness of the buttons on the Ooma which can be all the way off. When we pressed it, all the buttons were once again illuminated and visible.
/Grinning. “So your conclusion was correct!”
A dude we know types lol after almost everything he types. Even if it is not funny. This bugs the shit out of us. LOL - Are you? Are you really?? That’s a lot of fucking laughing out loud. Perhaps it is the fact that the “l” and the “o” keys are close together on the keyboard and it’s just soooo easy? Perhaps he really is that happy about everything (but I don’t think so). Anyway, it’s annoying…
/smirk “Kinda like typing ellipses after everything?”
/hands on hips “YES - Exactly!”
We totally just marked even more of our territory.
/Wrinkles nose. “Ewwwww”
“Shut up and just listen.”
We purchased another domain name so nobody will ever steal it. ‘shyspark.me’ now officially belongs to us. Yes the collective us. How cool is that??!!
/Giant smile. “Way, way cool”.
Burnt sienna was what I found
As I rode my bike that night
Things just looked different from that angle
And in that special light.
Now what I have on my palette
Are all the colors up to 64
And don’t really have the need or use
Or want for any more.
So take your lemon yellow
And your distinguished black and white
And walk away with all you brought
I’ve no use for them tonight.
Remember the blue house we live in? Well tomorrow someone is going to come and clean it for us. That’s right, a legit cleaning service is going to spic-n-span this beautiful abode from floor to ceiling. We’re so excited we want to throw a party in honor of this event. But then again, people are just messy and will probably just muck it all up again - so never mind…
“You prolly think you’re in the big time now don’t you?”
/Smirk “Well duh!”
Not so long ago I started with I
Which quickly became somewhat of a we
But the we wasn’t a two
It was more likely a three.
Then that three begat six.
And then tripled to nine.
And then held status quo there
Because nine is divine.
Now we sit and we think
How many more might there be
Hidden among us
In this tumblr party?
We really need a good night sleep. The storm kept almost the whole house awake and when the house is awake, nobody sleeps.
*Wrinkles nose* Damn noisy blue house!
Anyway, after today we feel pretty good. Despite the lack of sleep, this day was far superior to the last few days. It sort of makes one believe that circumstance does not matter as much as bio-chemistry and other environmental factors. We don’t really know, and articulating it right now isn’t quite what we had in mind, but there are now several articles we have read having an impact on our thoughts about the future. Not to mention, of course, the recent event of our grandmothers passing from this existence to the next. Again, not a thing to expand on now, but high hopes for more to come on all that soon…
“Soon being another month I suppose?”
*Frown* So, freaking, what?!