Flash in the Pan


A Quarterly Posting at Tiny Lights

Third Time’s A Charm?


by Judy Drechsler

Officejet 6500 701n #1 lived at Costco with all his buddies before being adopted and taken home by Mac and Judy to live with three HP computers, ages 5,4, and not quite 1. #1 had behavior problems immediately. He refused to accept printer paper and displayed serious error codes. Judy refused to put up with this kind of language and called HP for help.

She was put in touch with Margaret who lived in India. Margaret sympathized with her problems and tried valiantly to help. After more than two hours of frustrating back and forth nothing they tried had changed #1's behavior one whit and Margaret offered to take #1 back for retraining and send a replacement. Judy agreed.

Officejet 6500 701n #2 was sitting on the porch the next afternoon waiting patiently to be let into the house. #2 was just as handsome as #1. Black and silver shiny skin with one cute, green eye that blinked coyly when turned on. Judy was hopeful that he would be the right one for them.

At first everything seemed to be going well…until she put in the color cartridges. #2 seemed to resent this enormously and absolutely refused to acknowledge they were even there, let alone use them to print color. Back to HP help.

Aden answered and was very polite. Each time he had to go and check the HP training manual to look up something he said, "Please wait 2 minutes. I'll be right back. Thank you for patience." And on returning, "Thank you, Judy, for being patiently waiting." After nearly 3 hours of cleaning print heads, automatically and manually with distilled water and a lint free clean cloth, re-initializing, restarting, and replacing cartridges twice, Judy was dead in the water. What she said next stopped Aden in his tracks. "I would like to send this back for a refund."

Silence. Then: "I cannot do that, Judy, but I will put you in touch with my case manager. She will take good care of you."

The Case Manager, named Melissa, explained that since we had adopted #1 from Costco, HP would not grant her a refund. The result of this was that the same afternoon Officejet 6500 701n #3 was on his way in the Fed Ex truck bound for Mac and Judy's side porch.

The next day Judy opened the door to find #3 sitting boldly on top of the bench on the side porch. Tiredly she lugged him inside and up the stairs to his room, pulled him carefully out of the box, and with trepidation and great hope, set him on the table and hooked him up. Judy crossed her fingers, closed her eyes and pushed the on button. #3 happily blinked his one green eye and obediently printed in both black and color. He pulled the printer paper in perfectly, recognized the wireless laptops with a smile, and printed photos in beautiful color without one nasty error code. Judy, Mac and #3 lived happily ever after.

Judy Drechsler has been a teacher of writing for the last 30 years in Alaska and Washington to children of all ages. She has had many professional articles published during that time. Since retiring to Port Townsend she has had the time to explore writing essays and poetry at a new depth. She especially wishes to thank her writing teacher, Sheila Bender, from whom she has taken many courses and learned much.

Twenty-seventh Flash


Rainbow by Karn Belgard
Expanding Boundaries by Arlene L. Mandell
Eight by Laurel Aiona
Believe by Carol Hoorn
Wash Day by Kim Tennant
The Beginning Of The End by Linda Melick
Putting Digits In Places They Shouldn't Be by Teresa Oefinger
Evening by Jane Person


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