After much mutual soul-searching by myself and the Better Half (“What do we really want out of the Internet?”), the answer came back–“everything”. I told him, “It’s your money, so it’s your call.” He elected to drive over to the Springfield Best Buy yesterday and go with the e-Machines $399-with-rebates-including-printer-and-monitor and 1 year’s free MSN.
I pointed out, not very loudly, “If we just go with a year’s worth of Prodigy or somebody, that’s only $240.” But hey, a guy doesn’t get many chances in life to saunter into a Best Buy and tell the pimply-faced kid, in a lordly manner, “Yes, I’ll take one of those and one of those…” So I didn’t rain on his parade too much.
I did, however, interrupt the enthralled dialogue between the two of them on the ease of upgrades, availability of more RAM, etc. “We’re not interested in upgrades, we just want it for the Internet,” I said firmly, dragging a panting Better Half away to cool down over by the speakerphones.
And what a difference we have now–surfing the Internet at light speed. I feel like Geena Davis in Thelma and Louise, the morning after she and Brad Pitt…cough… you know…
Moving up from a 14400 modem to a V90, and changing from a 486 processor to “some kind of Celeron”, I dunno exactly what, it’s got a lot of Hertzs after its name. Woo-hoo! Windows Millenium looks just like Win95. And now La Principessa can play I Spy Spooky Mansion while Mom’s posting madly at the Straight Dope, no more arguments. “You’re always doing message board, it’s not fair!” So we are that demographic delight, a two-computer family (the other old one, the one that had Windows 3.1 installed on it, has been sent to the basement, to be eventually recycled into dishwasher components or something).
And to add the icing on the cake, evidently the Reader plumped for a T-1 upgrade while we were shopping yesterday, so my Internet cup overfloweth.
So I am now going out behind the garage to sacrifice a chicken to the Computer Gods in hopes that this whole thing won’t blow up in our face (dire warnings from the Best Buy kid about the dangers of not popping for the Best Buy Service Contract, etc.) and we’ll be worse off than when we started. I’m going to keep the free Juno e-mail, just in case the e-Machine doesn’t get the “oh, behave” chicken message from On High. Somehow I doubt whether Juno is signing up new users for anything, even free e-mail. But otherwise, looks like it’s buh-bye, Juno.
And Charles? I’d actually like to thank you for raising your prices 500% overnight–that was the nicest thing anybody has ever done for me. Bonzo looked up excitedly last night from his Pokemon MB and reported, “Hey, Mom, didja know, these smilies move!” Bless his little heart. And bless you, too, Charles, for being a clueless corporate twit.