When the SuperEgo Reveals the Id(iot)

I have been working in the information technology field in one facet or another for approximately 7 out of the last 9 years. I have learned a few things about computers and how they work. This has resulted in many family members and friends (in several states) to come to me for their computing needs. These needs range from advising what the appropriate hardware is needed to play the latest release of “Barfmonster Battle XVII” (including the USB mic headset and 26″ plasma monitor) to setting up the speech recognition software (including the USB mic headset and 26″ plasma monitor). I have no problem with this and I am happy to help. Occasionally, there are times when I must reluctantly utter three words —”I don’t know”.

This isn’t so bad when it’s just me and the other individual (such as my wife for example). Unfortunately, men are strange prideful creatures. If they are in the same room with their friends (or a repairman), they suddenly transform into a panel of experts in that particular field. A man can have something go wrong with his car. If his wife asks what is causing the problem, he’ll simply say “I don’t know”. However, if one or more if his friends how up, you will find them both with their head under the hood uttering phrases such as: “Yup”, “Did you calibrate the intake?”, “Sure did, I also reset the inner side torque to 8 ft/lbs”. This conversation will then turn to one man with his head under the hood wiggling random parts and going “TRY STARTING IT NOW!” The other man will begin turning the ignition key and saying “C’MON BABY”. After 8 hours of this routine, the men decide reluctantly to retain the services of a mechanic with the simple rationalization: “I don’t have the tools for that job”.

It is truly an exercise in humility to hand the mechanic the keys and try not to engage in any conversation. After all, why reveal to the mechanic and your wife that you were completely clueless all along? I felt better after I got home. One of my friends came by because he had a computer problem. Finally, I was back into some familiar territory. This resulted in the following conversation: “Did you restore the hyperthread registry?”, “Yup, I even flushed out the TCP/IP”, “TRY RE-BOOTING IT NOW!”, “C’MON BABY”, “Oh wait, dude. I know what the problem is but you need to call tech support. I don’t have the tools for that.”

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