Answer: Like going blind. Question: What's it like using a computer with a dying video card?
Ever since Gateway closed their Country Stores, Mrs. Linklater has had to deal with them over the phone. It's not that the people are so bad; it's getting to the people that's bad.
Just send me three times more memory and a big ass replacement video card, please.
Forty five minutes.
But, all in all Gateway is easy to work with compared to the live online AOL techs who type English as a second language.
And neither one could begin to confuse customers with the amazing skill of Symantec.
This year, in order to successfully upgrade to Norton Firewall and SystemWorks 2004, Mrs. Linklater finally had to delete old Symantec files so deep in her computer, she could feel the slimy stuff on the bottom.
Meanwhile, who came up with that Gateway Country Stores idea anyway?
And those boxes that look like they killed a cow to package your computer? Nothing like barnyard memories to sell high tech equipment.
Imagine the meetings their marketing people must have had. Let's make computers warm and fuzzy. Friendly and down home. And what's more warm and fuzzy, friendly and down home than cows.
Works for me.
Then some guy who looks vaguely like Tom Hanks bursts into the room. Hey, you guys, I've got it! We can call our warehouse sized strip mall edifices Grandma's 'Puter Places!
Hm-m-m, maybe not, sounds too much like potatos.
How 'bout Computer Barns 'r' Us? Nah, we'd get sued.
Wait -- this is perfect -- Country Stores. Neutral. Inoffensive. Bland. Boring. Excellent. Call the agency. Do we have one?
It's all about "branding."
Actually branding would have been a nice touch. Like having Mrs. Linklater's initials branded on her computer when she bought it..
With free bottles of warm milk and a box of steaks with every upgrade. So many missed opportunities.
No wonder the Country Stores closed.
[Ever get sidetracked writing an entry? Mrs. Linklater just did. This one was going to be about all the fun she had with her younger daughter, who was in town on business. Not even close]