Let’s see … in the last week or so I have continued beating my new computer into submission, with a fair amount of success. But that seems like the easiest thing I’ve done. I also tried for the umpteenth time or two to make my video doorbell fully functional again. I don’t know if it’s working now or not. It’s only been semi-working for a number of weeks, not recording actual video like it’s supposed to, probably due to my constant efforts to fix it (several reboots and, in desperation, resets). The problem was either in the doorbell itself or in the app on my phone. But I’m crossing my fingers that it’s happy again.
Then there’s my adventure with cutting the cable cord. I know, I know, I’m the last person in the world to do it, but better late than never. I forget now if there was something specific that finally pushed me over the edge. Probably a couple of months of looking at obscenely high bills from Xfinity. But they’ve had their revenge as I continue to struggle with the totally new, unfamiliar, unintuitive onscreen interface using an Xbox controller. At least it’s midsummer and the writers are on strike, so I haven’t been missing a lot of favorite shows (except Colbert; I love Colbert).
In my more energetic moments, I played with several living room lamps and some outdoor lights front and back. All now have nifty Wi-Fi controls for on/off and brightness levels. Plus schedules for them to come on automatically or in response to voice commands. Hugely convenient, once I finally got them set up properly (again, working with apps on the phone).
All of this is dependent, of course, on Wi-Fi throughout the house. And it’s years past time to move the modem and router out of the study, where I no longer do anything other than feed the cat, to a more central location that doesn’t have a million walls between the source and most of the dependent devices. Yep, it finally dawned on me what that coax outlet in the kitchen is for, the one up near the ceiling. (All these years I assumed it was just so the homeowner could have a little tv in the kitchen.)
However, after disconnecting and dragging the router and modem and all their respective cords into the kitchen (and climbing a ladder to get them up on top of the kitchen cabinets), it turned out (after going back down the ladder) that the closest electrical outlet, down near the floor, was about a foot too far away. Damn!
So, up the ladder again to retrieve the aforementioned devices, return them to the study, and get them set up again so that everything in the house would work. Again. And then order a power strip/surge protector with a cord long enough to span the newly discovered gap.
(Are you laughing yet? I definitely was not.)
Fast forward a day or two and try it again, after carefully positioning and sticking the new power strip to the wall with Command strips. Unplug the modem and router, haul them to the kitchen, climb the ladder, set them up, climb back down the ladder, plug everything in. And …
No bright light on the power strip, no lights on the modem or router. $#^%&)(^*$!! Unplug everything, haul it all back to the study, reinstall everything in the study. Again.
Subsequent testing with another device (in this case, a hair dryer) confirmed the wall outlet is functioning normally. As is the power strip; it just happens to be a model that doesn’t have an “on” light on it (who does that!?).
But, not content to play with ladders, modems, routers, and short cords, I also managed, apparently, to mess up my phone (the “smart” one that controls all the Wi-Fi in the house). For some reason I’ll probably never figure out, it decided it wasn’t going to send texts. That was important because I rarely call; I text. And while poking around in some sub- sub- submenus on the phone, messing with settings I probably shouldn’t have messed with, I also managed to disconnect/disable my smartwatch — that rather important device with the fall detector for the old woman who lives alone (and spends her time climbing ladders in the kitchen). It took me one entire day to get the watch and phone functioning properly again.
Anyway, as I type, the router and modem remain in the study where they were to begin with. The ladder is still in the kitchen next to the cabinets. And the power strip is lying powerless on a nearby table. One of these days I’m going to try again. Maybe. In the meantime I’m contemplating the wisdom of “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”