The Bad News: Yesterday morning my iMac G5, which has operated flawlessly since I got it three years ago, suddenly froze solid for the first time ever. I could only turn it off with the power button, and when I started it up again I got a black screen, no start-up chime and the fan was on overdrive. Using one of the laptops in the house I did some research online and discovered that my Mac had all the symptoms of a catastrophic logic board failure. Even worse, after much frantic scrambling through mountains of old files and folders, trying to locate my warranty info, I discovered that my Apple Care had expired two months ago. Very Bad News.
Outside of the warranty, the repair to my Mac was going to cost almost as much as a new computer! Even worse, all my jobs, past and current from the last three years - plus all the the scanned images and written research I've done for Today's Inspiration - EVERYTHING! - was locked up on my dead machine. After a day of much weeping and gnashing of teeth I was little more than a pathetic ball of nerves, curled up in the fetal position on the kitchen floor. That's how my darling wife found me when she got home from work.
There are many reasons why I married this girl, but here's one of the main ones: without a moment's hesitation, she took the bull by the horns, said, "go get your computer. I'm going to get it fixed and I'm getting it fixed for free." - and in a flash she was off to our local Apple reseller/repair shop to kick some ass and take names. I love it when she does that!
The Good News: after an hour at the shop and another hour on the phone, she managed to get Apple to agree to completely cover the cost of the repair, despite the computer being two months past the warranty!
The Bad News: All of this year's remaining 'Countdown to Christmas' material is now sitting in the shop on that ailing machine, and I don't have the time or energy to rescan everything, or re-research all the accompanying text. That means this year's Countdown has come to an unscheduled, abbreviated conclusion a week ahead of time. Sorry gang.
The Good News: After a hiatus for the rest of this year, Today's Inspiration will resume on January 5th, 2009. I already have several weeks of new material planned, and no doubt the new year will bring all sorts of interesting surprises.
So as much as I hate to say it, this is good bye... for now. Here's hoping everyone has a Merry Christmas, a Happy New Year and a wonderful holiday break! Many thanks to everyone who has shared their art, information, comments, suggestions and words of encouragement - and to all of you who have simply dropped by to look and read. You all make the effort of putting this blog together a huge pleasure.
See you next year!
* And meanwhile, be sure to drop by Charlie Allen's Blog for the Christmas installment of the CAWS.