To that, I want to ask, what happens to email? Societal breakdown is nothing compared to email breakdown when you are trying to do a job in 21st century America.
All the gold and all the silver in the world won’t help you out if you are waiting for an email that just won’t come, or you can’t read it even if it did come. BlackBerry users found that out just recently.
If I had any inclination toward smugness over the Blackberry users’ misfortune, it turned to sympathy as soon as my own problems developed. My email has been repeatedly crashing since yesterday. It is a roller-coaster of mental anxiety.
I sign in, and if email is working, I feel as if I have won the lottery. Then it crashes. I am frustrated. I begin to do non-email related tasks. Then a shout goes up from a nearby colleague that email might be functioning again and I drop what I am doing to try to log back in.
I have done this repeatedly. Once I opened my email, hit delete for the first one that I read and the whole thing went down again. I signed back in, and quite miraculously, I was able to respond to one email so at least one email sender in the US of A will actually know I am here working. Then down it went again as I was composing a response to another.
I feel like I am a resident of a country that experiences repeated power outages. Every routine in life begins to revolve around when the power will commence.
Email not working? Gee, I can get the snailmail. Still not working? I suppose I could go to break. Still not working? Well I have a couple of features that I could edit in the meantime.
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But wait, email is working again.
If you get the idea that intermittant email is worse than no email at all, you would be right. I have lost count of how many times I’ve cycled through sign in and crash. Going back and forth between email and whatever else needs doing is like a bad case of professional attention deficit disorder. Heaven help me if major news breaks, or an officer of the company emails me an inquiry and I do not answer in a reasonable period of time.
I don’t know when I will get my fully functional email back. It could be back on now if only I would try it right this minute as I write this, but I won’t know for sure at least until this column is finished.
There are just two positive things that have resulted from this particular email problem. The first is it is not a computer crash. I am functioning fully regarding my other computer-based tasks.
The second positive thing is this unreliable email system has given me something to write about in this space. That’s no small thing to someone like me who has to come up with 52 column topics a year and still more for daily blog posts.
So, OK. Thanks, email. I’m done with this column. You can come back on now.
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