Monday, September 19, 2011

My Printer Better Not Die

When my husband and I merged households, I decided we would keep my fancy printer/scanner/copier machine and donate his older but reliable printer to Goodwill.  It seemed silly to store a back-up printer in our basement even though we have tons of available space.  Oh, hubris!  Why must I court disaster?

I recently used my printer to scan an old photograph.  As I had many times before, I positioned the photograph on the glass, closed the lid, and clicked "Scan Photo."  The printer responded with one of the most awful sounds I have ever heard.   It was a metallic crunching sound that definitely fell into the category of "Sounds You Do Not Want Your Printer to Ever Make." 

The printer then displayed this message:

WTF?  That is my strategy when anything with a power button fails: turn it off, wait a moment, and turn it back on.  But holy crap, I expect better advice from the manufacturer!  I’m surprised the printer didn’t also suggest the following: (1) gently hit the printer; (2) hit it harder; and (3) get an ice pack for your hand and pretend the printer just needs a few hours of quiet time.

I assumed the printer had gone to Printer Heaven, but I turned the machine on and off anyway.  The printer made a few unhealthy sounds and then told me:

What the $&%#* is the “scanner lock switch”?  I didn’t even know the printer had a scanner lock switch, but now I’m supposed to release it.  Sighing, I flipped a random switch and turned the machine off. 

At this point, I assumed the printer was in self-destruct mode and was going to taunt me with a series of bizarre requests – rub my belly with olive oil; open the hatch port and whistle the theme song from Cheers; now swing a dead chicken around your head.  Things were going to end badly.

When I turned the printer back on, I braced myself, half-expecting the entire printer to explode.  My poor husband would come home and find me dead, lying in a pool of blood, fatally wounded in the forehead by printer shrapnel.

Instead, the printer made some happy sounds.  Cautiously, I tried to scan the photograph again and … success! It worked!  I fixed the printer all by myself!  

Now if you'll excuse me, I need to run to Goodwill and buy back my husband's old printer.  Apparently we do need a back-up printer after all.

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