By Tim Hayes
Okay, so it wasn’t quite as theatrical a conversion as Saul being thrown to the ground and struck blind on the road to Damascus. But it felt – and continues to feel – like a thrilling, punch-to-the-gut, hair-raising, baffling, wonderful conversion to me nonetheless.
I switched from a PC to Mac over the long Memorial Day weekend.
Reaction from friends and colleagues has swerved from “Traitor!” to “Oh, I feel your pain” to “I know people who said it was hell for two weeks but now they’d never go back.”
Yeah. Got it. I understand. Now, yes, I understand.
“Old Blue,” my warhorse PC, had been around for seven years or so. It served me well for about six. I realize that pushed his career of service long past the expected expiration date. Perhaps because of that fact, this past year had become a challenge, to say the least.
The problem, in my completely uneducated and guesswork-driven view, mounted as infection after infection corroded Old Blue’s innards to the point where simply booting up in the morning became an insufferable journey through cyber-syrup. Try as he may, the speed of Old Blue’s synapses connecting felt like swimming through Jell-O. Frozen Jell-O. Frozen Jell-O mixed with a bag of Sakrete fast-drying cement. Am I making myself clear, or should I work on some more metaphors?
Not only that, but Old Blue began acting a little unpredictably. Crazy, jumpy, like a six-year-old after a day gorging on cotton candy and ice cream at Kennywood. Entire signed-on systems like Outlook or Word would just – Poof! – drop off with no warning, no alert, no nothing. “Save early and Save often” became the watchword, having learned the hard way that neglecting to do so brings much pain and anger. Hulk hate re-keying.
So, after resisting and delaying and rationalizing as long as possible, I stood up, stared the inevitable in the eye, and drove out to the Apple Store.
Now, no one’s ever accused me of being too smart when it comes to electronics and technology. So, it should surprise no one that the Apple Store has always intimidated me. It’s so clean and bright and beautiful in there. Team members in their blue t-shirts, roaming around, helping clueless dolts like me. No cash registers, just these cool little handheld transaction doo-dads that take your credit card and whirr out your receipt.
“Revenge of the Nerds” is not a movie. It’s what the Apple Store should really be called. You know they know more than you know. You know?
Anyway, I put on the face that I use when Christmas or birthday shopping for my wife in the makeup store or the ladies department at Macy’s. Guys, you understand what I mean. It’s the “Hey, I’m a stranger in a strange land here, and I could really use some help” face. One of the blue-shirted team members swooped over, we talked about what I needed my computer to do, and before you knew it, I became the owner of a shiny new Mac Book Pro.
Every day since then has burped up a fresh new PC-versus-Mac issue I’ve had to noodle my way around, but nothing so daunting that it’s affected serving my clients. The more this goes along, the more I like this new tool. Every now and then I’ll scream to myself, “Why, oh why, did I do this?” It can feel like converting from Amish to Scientology. But the conversion continues, and it’s gonna be good
So long, Old Blue. Mac the Knife’s here to stay.
Copyright 2013 Tim Hayes Consulting