Sunday, October 7, 2012

A Mission: The Missing Piece

But First, An Unrelated Topic

So I was gonna do a post about the obsolete-ness of blogs like mine. It's so early 2000s, journal-writing blogs like mine. This has been kind of smacking me in the face for the last few days because last week we had a unit on social networking in the class I'm teaching, and not only do none of those kids (born in 1994, fuck!) read blogs, none of them even use forums anymore except for the same reasons I do, which is to find the answer to a problem like, "My computer is plugged in but not charging."

Blogs nowadays are supposed be on a single, focused, Google-able, tag-able topic, which this blog is not. I mean, in my my mind it's on a single topic (the topic here is ME, by the way, and my fucking brain and the tiny events that make up the experience that creates ME). But in Internetland, this blog is a bunch of topics, like mothering and being an expat and living in Turkey and ME ME ME ME ME. Except ME isn't something turning up in Google searches, as much as I like to think I am the center of the universe.

A few students said they read blogs for football. A few clever ones read them for news commentary. The programmer types read programmer stuff, and apparently blogs are a good source of game cracks and links to pirate stuff. But that's it.

Won't mess with this shit.
As for online forums (which I'm pretty sure should be fora in the plural, but I don't want to be a dick), the information you get from those is pretty dodgy. Even my "plugged in not charging" problem, I solved with someone's blog. Forums contain scary techie people who tell you to do stuff with the computer's insides via something in the Start menu, that, while in English words, makes no sense at all. Or they get all snarky and insult each other in Klingon or whatever. Forums get way too incestuous and in-groupy-y Also they want to know a bunch of stuff about your computer that I have no idea about, and can't find from looking at my computer's underside. It's embarrassing all around.

Just this week on the one forum I look at regularly, the renegades from Dave's ESL cafe, one of the super champion moderators, a guy who knows how to mess with with the forum's insides, announced he was leaving the forum because the medium has become obsolete. Smack!

Crap. Because without certain forums, there were a few years there I might not have gotten through on my own. But apparently the kids these days are doing their own thing. Good for them. They pretty much own the medium anyway. The Internet medium, I mean. Digital natives and all that. It's kind of like the "Who Owns English" argument, but more fluid and less populated with grouchy old men. It's cool.

(Hint: Native speakers totally don't own English anymore. Suck it.)

One reason the forum was becoming obsolete was that I couldn't find the "Like" button.
And it's apparent from both forums, Dave's and the renegade one, that people are going to more useful places for information. Even the socialization has moved elsewhere. After the moderator resigned, we all gave our real names so we could become friends on Facebook.

And Now, The Topic At Hand

And to honor my online curmudgeonliness, I shall now change topics comletely. Ha!

It's ever so slightly cooler.
So I mentioned about buying a new iPhone while I was in the States. I didn't get the cool one everyone was camping out for. I didn't even get the one before that. I got the even-older version, which I mostly envied for its titanium outside (virtually kid-proof!) and super-tough airplane glass front and the two-way camera and the fact that the new battery would last longer than my existing one.

Which left me with a mostly perfectly decent old iPhone that needed getting rid of. So I found a guy who wants the old phone. I waited a month or so after getting the new phone activated by the tax people and Turkcell, just to make sure it wasn't going to mysteriously quit working, and then went about erasing everything on the old phone so I could give it to this fellow who wants it.

It came time to make the exchange, with the phone all plugged into the computer after the system restore, and the phone was asking for the Simcard. The Simcard was ready, as were the tequila shots, and I discovered there was a problem with that hole in the top of the old phone I didn't remember being there.

It turns out I'd somehow lost the little thingie you put the Simcard into and shove into the phone. It's small and looks like a piece of trash left over from a toy.

Serious business, only with lemons.

Does this thingie have a name? I don't know. Online, it was alternately referred to as a "tray" and a "Simcard holder." No matter. Mine was lost somewhere in the house I-don't-know-how-long-ago. And there were tequila shots waiting. So.

So anyway, this morning I undertook a wee search of the missing Simcard thingie. The fact that it was lost was baffling me, because I'm usually pretty anal about stuff like this. I have a collection of spare buttons that come with clothes. I have a special ashtray for tiny broken things to be fixed at a later date. I own a glue gun and I carry a tiny screwdriver in my purse.

But the Simcard thingie wasn't in any of the places it was supposed to be. Not in the basket of tiny useful things even my cleaner knows about, nor in the ashtray of even tinier things. Nor was it in the fake-silver tray where tiny stuff sometimes turns up. Or amid the crap on the desk where it might have gotten lost, not even in the cup of almost-dry pens and broken pencils.

I was faced with a choice. Tear up the entire house looking for that tiny bit of plastic that most likely has been thrown away or vacuumed up sometime in the last month, or try my luck outside buying a new one. I opted for the latter. Crazy, I know.

You want this kind of a place.
My first idea was to go to one of those little phone-electronics shops. Those places can do anything. When I went to Turkcell awhile back to find out about getting my Simcard cut into a micro Simcard for the iPhone 4, the girl was a bit bitchy and told me to come back a few days later and wanted to charge me 10 lira. So I marched a few doors down to the phone-electronics shop, where they had a cool little puncher thingie just for cutting Simcards into micro Simcards, and the guys were sweet and charged me 3 lira.
I even still have this thingie, from the Simcard cutting.

But then I ended up spending the day at a shopping mall, mostly because I wanted the good food therein, plus some Macro Center pork and cheese, plus the company of two nice new teachers who've just arrived here and my own company was looking bleak for the day. Before I met up with my friends, I went to a posh electronics shop that's the closest thing to an Apple Store because they mostly sell overpriced Apple accessories, such as 75tl iPhone cases.

I barely know what to call the Simcard thingie in English, so trying to call it something in Turkish proved challenging. So I called it "that little thing that holds the Simcard." It took some doing, but they got it. Only they didn't have that and sent me to Turkcell. Before Turkcell, I tried Techno SA, who also sent me to Turkcell. Turckcell told me to go to a place called Genpa somewhere in Etiler. I wasn't into that. I asked if they might have it at one of those little phone-electronics shops, and the guy said, "No, you'll never find it at one of those places," with a bit of disdain. And oddly enough, after explaining the little Simcard thingie several times in Turkish, my ability to explain it got worse, not better. The only thing I figured out was that likening it to a drawer was really a bad strategy.

Guys like this can do anything.
When I got back to my neighborhood, I tried the local Turkcell just for kicks and also because the bitchy girl was busy. Then I went down to the phone-electronics shop that punched my Simcard. They had all sorts of iPhone parts lying around-- replacement screens and cases, the cool earphones with the volume control, and interesting-looking inside bits. It was more heartening because they asked if I wanted black or white, and then went and had a look. No dice. So I tried the phone-electronics shop a few doors down. By now, my ability to explain the Simcard thingie had completely deteriorated. First, they offered me a Simcard. Then they offered me the outside of a cut Simcard, for free no less. Then they got out some tweezers, apparently to remove the Simcard they thought was stuck in my phone.
But the orchid babies are another story entirely.

Finally, we managed to work it out. And I'll be damned if they didn't have one. It looked a bit worse for wear, and it occurred to me it was probably best not to ask where it came from, but there it was. I'm really glad I didn't listen to anyone who was telling me those little shops wouldn't have it. It means my Turkey Spider Sense of where to find things is developing all right.

It almost makes me feel good enough to take on the electric company for overcharging me for the month we were out of town. Almost. I've heard that process involves a dilekçi and the account isn't in my name anyway.

Still, I definitely feel good enough to try to find some orchid potting mix so I can try to root some orchid babies I now have.

To celebrate, I fried up a massive T-bone steak I'd paid way too much for because I totally fucking earned it.

Rewarding myself with meat. Hooray!

1 comment:

BacktoBodrum said...

On the blog thing - who ever listened to someone born in 1994! That's even younger than my daughter. On the iphone thingy- you can always find what you want in little shops in Turkey. 100% - never doubt it.