September 7th, 2007

Park

hmmm ...

I have a computer issue and I'm not exactly sure what to do ...

So, my birthday is coming up in a couple of weeks ... and I'm turning 50 ... and, needless to say, given the current financial chaos, what might have been a multi-facteted blow-out is likely to be a subdued affair. The Wife has been wanting me to detail what I'd want for my birthday, but I've been so concentrated on not wanting anything, that I'm drawing a blank. She has suggested that this could be a good opportunity for me to upgrade stuff on my computer.

Now, the computer issue that I'm having is a continuation of previous issues with SecondLife ... I will, not infrequently, have a sudden crash, sometimes right into a reboot, sometimes just a black screen that requires me to power down the computer. I am assuming this is an issue with the video card that I got to run SL some months back, although I really can't be sure. Back then (when I had that major system problem) I had upgraded my machine's power supply (to 350w) and RAM (to 1g), and got the least expensive card that would support SL.

My question is: would it make any sense for me to ask for a new video card that would cost 1/4 of what a new system (given my propensity of getting cheapo systems) would, only to be looking to replace my system in a year or so anyway?

Feedback appreciated.


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Doom

OMG ... so it starts ...

As noted previously, I am a couple of weeks away from turning 50 ... today, after dropping The Girls off at school, I ducked across the street to pick up some semi-OTC sinus meds at Walgreens. I say "semi-OTC" as any more you need to get a card from the shelf and take it back to the pharmacy to get any Pseudoephedrine-based products and "register" your purchase back there (in Illinois, individuals are limited to 3.6g/person/day which, while being the absolute maximum on-the-box dose being used 24/7, is supposedly going to stop the tweakers from getting enough antihistamine to make crystal meth). Part of this process is them entering your ID (my drivers' license #) into the system ... which apparently has a full file on me, including my age.

Well, what spills out of the coupon printer after I complete the purchase??? "YOU ARE ELIGIBLE FOR A FREE AARP MEMBERSHIP!", complete with a full 18" of coupon tape application form. GACK!

What next? McDonalds telling me that I can get "Seniors' coffee" specials?

The funny/sad part of this is that I am already an AARP member, as The Wife (who is a couple of years older than me) signed up for it a while back (it's very cheap to join) to see if we'd be doing any better with their medical plan. Frankly, we saved something like 3x the membership fee on this recent trip when I found an AARP hotel rate that was $70 cheaper than "regular" and even $40 or so cheaper than the AAA rate Jeez ... can I have the blue plate special now?

However, having this thing spew out at me was quite the slap in the face. I feel like I should go soak my teeth or something.


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