I'm still struggling with the computer.
I guess I'm just going to have to wave bye-bye to a lot of the mail that came in over December, as the last several times I tried to get into the HD on that there was no response. I'm still able to look with the boot-from-CD version of Ubuntu and it sees that there's a 500mb HD in there which is partitioned into two drives, but now it can't access any of it ... which I understand is due to some "boot sector" death, and which I further take it to be non-fixable.
It just seems odd that this should continue to degrade. I suppose that had I done a defrag or something a month ago when the BSoD started showing up I might have avoided this. It perplexes me, however, why the thing has been getting WORSE when simply being turned off for a week (a week ago I could get into the C: drive, today when I tried to go get the last desperate files, no).
To top this off, my external 1TB drive for a while was not playing well with my current resurrected Frankenstein system. I'd had a request for some information (which might lead to a new assignment) which was in a file on that which had been rescued from the dead system, and I panicked, and hooked it and a flash drive to the dead system and managed to use that run-time version of Ubuntu to move those files to the flash drive so I could get them onto the current system to be able to get them to this guy. Fortunately, when I finally gave up trying to get to the old C: and re-connected the external HD with the current system it saw it just fine ... but this was not a welcome additional stressor.
I'd been given a $75 Amazon gift certificate from Santa, and used that to order a new HD (actually, I threw in another $10 and got a 1TB internal drive) for the main computer. I'm hoping this will be plug-and-play (well, as much as can be expected with having to use the "Factory Restore" disk), and that I'll be able to relatively painlessly get it to re-install the last back-up I did to the external drive before this bit the dust.
AND ... IF THAT WASN'T STRESS ENOUGH ...
Do you recall just before the holidays, my having gone out to the suburbs for a real-live in-person interview for a writing gig? Well, they'd told me that they'd probably not be ready to contact anybody about the next round of interviews until the first week of January. I hung close to my e-mail box all last week, waiting to hear ... and today I ended up doing a "Uh, Hello?" e-mail note to the gal I'd spoken with, cc'ing the HR person who had set up the interview. Within an hour I'd gotten what is now a very familiar "boilerplate" response about how they thought I was just marvy and all, but they'd "decided to pursue other candidates for the position". It just kills me when I actually get an interview, think I did OK (I really busted my butt doing background research for this one), and then get the generic blow-off.
Yes, on the plus side, I don't have to start figuring out bus-to-train schedules to get out to the west suburbs, but I thought I was sufficiently on-target to have made the second round of interviews! Very depressing.
It also doesn't help that both of the jobs The Wife was interviewing for over the past couple of weeks seem to have gone *poof* as well ... one totally off the table and one into a "maybe project work" deal.
So, between the on-going computer trauma (I can't write, I can't research, I can barely get ANYTHING done), my being sick for a week, and the few shards of hope we had for employment blowing away, it's a big time "sucks to be me" period.
I really hoped 2010 wasn't going to be as bad as 2009, but so far it's looking grim. :-(