Cost of Doing Business: Upgrades

I am at a certain time of life when everything I own (including my own personal body) is wearing out.

I pulled on my favorite work pants last week and the knee ripped open. The same day, a favorite shirt gave way at the elbow as I slid my arm into the sleeve.

I sport a manly scar on my cheek from last week’s plastic-surgery for skin CA  take three. The parts are failing, breaking down, aging out.

Things fall apart. Thank goodness for the surgical option. And for needle and thread. And for upgrades when our technological things fall apart.  A guy can swim against the current of chaos–up to a point. But negentropy is expensive.

This morning–out of town with some time-sensitive work to do, the 2009 MacBookPro churned to an almost complete stop after upgrading to the lastest IOS version.  Nothing doing.

And this at the end of a string of failings that have made me know for a year or more that I’d eventually have to upgrade. Today was the day when something had to be done to keep from being swept to sea.

Against my strong frugal inclinations, I ordered a MacBook Air–quite possibly my last technological “up with the Joneses” expense. At some point, I’ll just stick with what I  have until it breaks or becomes as obsolescent as I will be at that point, and the fat lady will have sung.

But not quite yet.  The cost of doing business is high, but I can still pay it with some vague hope that it will be worth the investment. I’ll let you know.


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Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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  1. Keep plugging away, Fred. Although we aren’t always verbal there are quite a few of us who follow your adventures and would really miss them. Good luck with the new Mac. I think you’re going to like it. Sometimes change is good when we least expect it.