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Thursday, August 15, 2013



Computers make for the perfect storm to scare the crap out of old people. 

Computers are new(ish), they are complicated, they are inconsistent, and they have scary pop-up messages.

Old people like old stuff, simple stuff, stuff that is predictable, stuff that does not have scary pop-up messages.

The media constantly bombards us with warnings about computers.  Change your password and make them difficult to remember.  Have virus protection or else someone in the Ukraine will empty all your bank accounts and steal your grandchildren.

With all this in mind, I purchased Norton Anti-virus for my PC.

I constantly get a pop-up from Norton,

“ERROR DETECTED…error 8765340-urscrewed…stand by while we fix this error.”

After about fifteen minutes Norton tells me,

“We are unable to auto fix error 8765340-urscrewed…go to Norton online fix.”

I have been warned about how devious internet hackers can be, how do I know this is Norton and not a devious hacker just waiting for me to visit his site?  Having already been hacked, I decide to ignore Norton (for which I pay $55 a year.)

My computer seems just fine despite error 88765340-urscrewed, but now I am a nervous wreck with every keystroke…Thanks Norton!

Later on in the day, I try to cut and paste a web site in an email to Mrs. Cranky.  I get this pop-up,

“Do you want to allow this site to have complete control of your computer, empty your bank accounts and steal your grandchildren?”


I almost select “yes” out of habit but stop myself and hit no.

“You have selected no, are you sure you do not want to allow this site to have complete control of your computer, empty your bank accounts and steal your grandchildren?”

I select “yes.”

“You have selected ‘yes,’ is that ‘yes’ you want to allow this site to have complete control of your computer, empty your bank accounts and steal your grandchildren? Or ‘yes’ I meant to select ‘no’?”


“Please respond in ten seconds, no response will be a ‘yes,’ but we are not sure if yes will mean yes, give up control, or yes you meant no.”

I immediately shut down my computer.

 When I restarted it, Norton popped-up,

“We have detected an error…it may or may not be a problem…suggest you put a hold on all bank accounts and put your grandchildren into the witness protection program.”

Is it any wonder that computers scare the sh*t out of old people?


  1. aw, I'm old and I ain't afraid of no computer. Some people thought we would be goners after midnight in 1999 because of computer chips. jumping jeeeez

    Before I got a Mac, I got several bad dude happenings. Had to just totally clear the computer and reinstall from the beginning.

    Being dainty ... when the porn stuff started happening, I hurried as quickly as I possibly could to close all the pop ups... sometimes it took a bit longer than other times.

    I sincerely mean it when I say... I never.

  2. that's a lot of midnights... to be more specific? the last midnight of 1999... but then you knew that

  3. I'm not afraid of computers--as long as I have my big, brave son to protect me!!

  4. Not just the old folk are scared!

    Devious little devices, computers...


  5. You can count me among those who live in fear of the computer. They make some things easier but most things more difficult.

  6. Not so much scared, but frustrated, aggravated, annoyed and irritated- YES!

  7. I have been dragged, kicking and screaming, into technology and social networking. Though clueless, I managed to muddle my way through what I need to. Just don't ask me how I do it.

  8. They do have a mind of their own. Just when I think I understand something....BAM!....I'm inventing new curse words.


  9. Grandchildren can beam themselves out of danger. Just answer "No" to everything!

  10. Been scared computer sh*tless several times myself trying to decided whether no means NO and what the definition of IS is.

  11. One of the scariest things to me is that my nearly 8 year old grandson knows WAY more than I do about computers. Oh well, at least he probably won't get stolen if I mess something up.

  12. They have minds of their own, those computers. My laptop has a name: Shiba. Short for Toshiba. She's a cantankerous wench who often refuses to hook up.

  13. LOL

    Oh, oh, oh how we love them though.

    I have Vipre (yes that's the spelling) taking care of my babies. The logo is a viper, ready to poison those pesky viruses.

  14. Norton is $20.00 on amazon or free if you are a Comcast subscriber.

    Currently either WebRoot or BitDefender are the top two and can be had for $25.00 for three computers on Amazon.

    If you are running Windows XP you are at risk and should be using Windows 7.

    If you ever get an unexpected pop-up you should use Task Manager to shut it down. Clicking "cancel" or the "red X" will activate the pop-up the same as if you agreed!