No, I Will Not Fix Your Computer

No, I Will Not Fix Your Computer

Fix your computer? I’d rather be fixing coffee. (Translation: No, I will not fix your computer.) [Image shared by Amazon]

“Fix your computer? No, I will not fix your computer.” — Your Wishful Inner Voice, circa whenever you’re asked

Are you the person in your family who gets a call whenever the computer of someone in your extended clan starts acting a little off kilter? Have you been designated as the resident computer expert either because:

  1. you have genuine know-how about the complex synergy between tangible machine hardware and the more esoteric nuances of its software, or
  2. you’re just caught playing a lot of Skyrim in the basement’s makeshift recreation room instead of doing your algebra homework?

Learn how to say this one simple phrase and I guarantee that your life will automatically become at least 75% simpler:

“No, I will not fix your computer.”

Doesn’t it feel good just to say it out loud? Sure, you may have to work up the courage to actually say it out loud to the next family member or friend who tries to wrangle you into performing arcane acts of mending on their impaired machine, but every baby step counts.

Still can’t come out and say what you mean (and say it mean)? Maybe a little visual clarification on the audio track will help get the point across in a way that doesn’t make you so uncomfortable. Like, say, a coffee mug that beautifully conveys the message simply and poignantly. (And if you’re not into coffee, the same mug will work nicely for tea, milk, water, soda, or a variety of adult beverages as the situation demands.)

No, I Will Not Fix Your Computer

Are your friends and family still not getting the picture? Believe it or not, genuine illiteracy is a far bigger obstacle to getting ahead in the world than computer illiteracy. But you must persevere if you wish to live a life free from the beck and call of the less tech savvy.

Article Written by

Our resident "Bob" (pictured here through the lens of photographer Jason DeFillippo) is in love with a woman who talks to animals. He has a fondness for belting out songs about seafaring and whiskey (arguably inappropriate in most social situations). He's arm-wrestled robots and won. He was born in a lighthouse on the storm-tossed shores of an island that has since been washed away and forgotten, so he's technically a citizen of nowhere. He's never killed in anger. He once underwent therapy for having an alien in his face, but he assures us that he's now feeling "much better." Fogarty also claims that he was once marooned along a tiny archipelago and survived for months using only his wits and a machete, but we find that a little hard to believe.

  • Robert Glen Fogarty

    Oops! My sister read this and thinks I was directing it toward her. I solemnly swear that this was not written with her in mind! Promise!

    • HaroldJamesJohnson

      Not even just a tiny bit?

      • Robert Glen Fogarty


  • scruball

    Sadly the whole neighborhood comes to me with their technology ills. I do say “NO”…sometimes. I do feel little bit obligated to help the poor people that got themselves baffled by technology. It started with setting VCR clocks and it would seem it will never stop – I’m cursed! It’s my profession, my job too. It is a very special kind of hell when your workday just wouldn’t end while you’re ambushed by family, friends and neighbors holding a piece of crapped out tech and worried look on their face. And those unfortunate people are usually on a deadline and need their device ASAP to complete their work.

    One thing though – I get furious when I see a device that’s been clogged by its owner with garbage and files scattered all over the place. How am I supposed to backup and preserve your files when they’re not even a bit organized? Several piles of files that include work, entertainment, games, emails and personal financing rolled into one, but not of the same type in the same place? Missing configuration files and non functioning settings panels? A browser with a ton of toolbars and bogus addons and a cesspool of malware that I do know you installed without taking the time to read the dialog boxes and just hitting “next”. If you are that person – I’m more likely to say “NO”.

    Yes I do know that people will cry foul and say – “Windows!”, but believe me I’ve seen some nasty botched and crapped up OS X, Linux, Android and even BSD systems. “User” can indeed be a derogatory term and it is OS agnostic.

    • HaroldJamesJohnson

      Do you get paid for your efforts? Or is your work “pro bono”?

      • scruball

        I get payed at work. It’s mostly “pro bono”, but would occasionally score a bag of chips, a jar of honey or jam, sometimes even a bottle of liquor.

        • HaroldJamesJohnson

          You’re a good man!

  • mark

    Found a nice way out of this.

    “I’ll be pleased to help you. I am using my skills to raise money for (a local children’s charity hospital). So think what it is worth to you to have your PC fixed, and make out a check to the charity, while I fix it for you.”

    Choose your charity carefully, so no-one can be offended by giving to it.

    I don’t personally get paid, but I do stop being a free resource. Eventually people seemed to get bored of actually paying for help, but I raised many hundreds before that happened.