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Sometimes all you have to do is look up to the sky and say your wish out loud, then, like manna from heaven, it will land in your lap.

Or, in my case, hit you in the head and knock you to the floor.

Hubs and I had been looking at computers for about a year, salivating over the iMac. It just looked so pretty ... the big screen, the funny icons, cool features (that we will likely never use) and by sheer bad luck, his old PC started doing irritating things and he said, “That’s it. We’re buying a new computer.”

I held my breath for a second, because this guy never ever ever wants to spend money.

I quietly walked out of his office, ’cause I knew he’d start his stream of epithets while banging on the keyboard.

I heard his keys get pulled off the desk and he said, “Let’s go ... right now.”

Hot diggity!

I pinched my cheeks and slipped into my Keds, doing a little happy dance behind him as he steamed like a mad bull.

Little Man was coming along, he wanted to see what Dad was gonna spend money on. His favorite thing to tell his friends is that his dad is Mexican.

“Your dad ain’t Mexican, dude. Why do you say that?”

“Well, my mom’s always calling him ‘El Cheapo.’”

Actually, that’s what I call the aftershave he wears. But if the name fits...

So off we go and walk around the store, trying not to look like we’re in a big rush, and eventually meander around to where the iMacs are luring us, like the call of the sirens.

Seriously, who doesn’t get caught up in the big giant flat screen monitor? The simple wee little keyboard? The curved smooth mouse?

The sales rep magically appeared behind us, which is unusual because normally you can’t find anyone when you’re just looking for something as simple as a power cord, but boy, stand in front of a big-ticket item and you might as well be holding the winning lottery ticket, ’cause they come out of the woodwork.

Hubs didn’t even flinch.

“I want this one.”

The guy started explaining all the features and Hubs said, “All I want to know is, can I trade stocks on it?”

“Yes, of course. It’s great for trading stocks!”

“Is it fast?”

The guy laughed and I could see the cartoon bubble over his head saying, “You greenhorn!” and he said, “It’s very fast,” and the bubble said, “You rube.”

Hmm. He forgot “Hayseed.”

Then Hubs mentioned something about me needing to have a word processing feature and I saw my cartoon bubble go “Share?”  I didn’t expect to get to use the new computer at all unless he was out of the house and I certainly didn’t think “sharing” would come into play.

Besides, my little laptop works just fine.

The sales rep looked at us over his glasses. Cartoon bubble say “Mo’ money?” Dingdingding!

“Well, that will be a few dollars extra, as this ultra deluxe model doesn’t have a word processor built in.”

Ah. There’s the catch.

He reached behind him without even looking and pulled the box off the shelf that held the wordprocessing software.

I looked down on the floor to see if he’d taped off where he stands, like magicians do.

“This is the program. It’s an extra 80 dollars,” he smiled, one of those imaginary, sparkly things glinting off his teeth. Hubs nodded and waved his hand forward.That is the El Cheapo version of “gimme.”

I had to reach over and tip Little Man’s mouth shut, putting his jaw in “closed” position.

I could see that little hamster wheel in his head calculating how much money was being dispensed.

I leaned over and whispered to him to go check out the video game stuff. Never have to suggest that twice.

I followed Hubs and Techno Nerd up to the counter as the transaction ensued.

As it was nearly completed, Hubs said, “I want to buy protection, too.” We never buy anything without protection. It has served us well.
He looked at Hubs oddly. Cartoon bubble say ‘Mo’money?’ but he said, “Well, I don’t think you’d need the protection service with this model.”
“I want it anyway. Three years.”

Got the beast home and hooked it up, but I had to sit in front of it for hours while Hubs asked questions. My single response to each was “I don’t know.”

After one week of trying to trade stocks at lightning speed, he was done. The cookies, the inability to maneuver easily from one session to the next, it was too confusing and overwhelming for a regular MS user.

I glanced up from my miniscule laptop screen last night and saw this humongous monitor coming down from the sky. It landed with a thud on my desk.

“It’s yours,” Hubs announced, “I can’t take it anymore. I don’t know what to do with it.”

After I picked myself up off the floor, I weakly tried to argue that he needed to keep at it, while lovingly cherishing the big bright screen before me.

As he stomped out of the room, I looked upward toward the heavens and mouthed, “Thank you.”

I looked down and saw Little Man doing the same thing over in the corner, figuring he’ll be next in line ’cause he has El Cheapo and La Stupida for parents.

Lucky boy.