That's pretty much the word I'd use when describing my state of being yesterday.

After sleeping with my precious laptop underneath my bed for the last four nights because of this contest I was returned with a favor: somewhere between 12:30-1:30 yesterday afternoon I received a "Dear John" letter (in the form of a gray screen with a file folder and blinking "?" on it) from my Macbook. Apparently my obsession with getting A Really Goode Job was too much for her. The hours spent blogging, tweeting, editing, previewing, and watching videos was just too much for her. She was tired of being overused and under-appreciated (aren't we all?). She felt the time had come to go our separate ways.

Despite my attempts to woo her back (I even contacted a genius to mediate), I am still being given the silent treatment. And before you even ask, the answer is no: in fact, it's a BIG F A T resounding "NO!," we did not have any of the hard drive backed up.

Other words I might use to describe my day?

What about "crushing?" That pretty much sums up the blow of losing all of our honeymoon photos/future post photos/and silly family moment photos ("Goodbye Camp Sherman and Mexico, goodbye CCR cupping, goodbye nine year anniversary date night! We'll miss you!")

And "devastating." That's how I felt when I first realized that I'd lost the only copy of the food memoir I've been diligently dedicating the past four months to. As I explained to my dear friend Alice between sobs, this is perhaps the most overwhelming thing that can happen to a writer. To have your words ripped away from you is like nothing else and of course the thought of having to sit down again and try to recreate what had already been written seems like an absolute impossibility.

Are any of you familiar with that children's book Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day? Well yeah, it was kind of like that. There were numerous other ridiculously unsatisfying things that happened both prior to and after the explosive, crashing failure of my hard drive (wasp sting, mud on my new coat, broken cup,etc.) Surely details too insignificant to share or bore you with, but suffice to say that by the time I had returned home from various attempts to console my computer, I was fretfully inconsolable. Yes, Friends, that's exactly the right word for this occasion.

My reaction was to swear off looking or even thinking about another computer, and to go out and buy not one but two bottles of Sonoma county produced zinfandels to do a little wine tasting. How predictable are we during a break-up? My laptop leaves me because I've been consorting with a bunch of winos and I proceed to go right back to the source of the problem. Well, what can I say? If you can't beat 'em, join 'em. When it was all said and done I managed to convince myself that this was all a sign; that it was supposed to happen so that I would be forced to go down to Sonoma and nail this really good(e) interview, and land this really good(e) job so that I could be inspired to sit down and not only rewrite what I had already completed for our book, but be able to add a new chapter, the chapter about my six-month internship as Murphy-Goode's Wine Country Life Correspondent. On top of all of that, I've got a sneaking suspicion that if there ever were a place that existed where I could feel more motivated than ever to recapture my words, Healdsburg, CA would be it.

Come on, Folks: Help a girl out (keeping in mind that you would actually be helping two girls out). Please vote for our video. Have your friends vote for our video. I personally could use your support now more than ever.


Tolovana said...

Do not assume all is lost. We have had a hard drive crash, and recovered our data by sending the drive to a recovery service. It cost us about 1200, but it was worth it.

Deanne said...

Oh Ali, I'm so sorry!!! I totally understand. My worst version of that experience was when my best friend's mother passed away, and I realized that even though I had backed up some things, my pictures from my last trip home (including some wonderful pictures of her mom) were not part of what had been backed up. I was devastated. I hope there is something more that can be done, as Tolovana said above. *hug*

Unknown said...

Concha mi madre, puta la wea po. Pobrecita! I sympathize fully. Two months ago I lost everything...One full year of production planning for the next three and all my Todpod tunes (which as we all know are way more important than anything else...the same as your photos). I hope you can recover some of photos. The whole Mauritz family is votin for ya, asi que ojala resulta en algo bueno. Cuidate mucho amiga mia, no lloras tanto, y busca los abrazos del Don Evan para cariños. Con esos será todo bien. Te esperaré para tus fotos de Cali.

Mark D. said...

Ok, wtf? To say I'm slighted when you have someone in the family who fixes these damned things for a living and you don't call, you don't write...

Ok...Ok...I'm collecting myself. Coal in your Hanukkah stocking though.!

Oh, my cheek hurts. Here, let me remove my tongue now.

Ali and Tara said...

This too shall pass.

SoCoTom said...

Ali, you guys should definitely check out the recovery services that are out there. Not cheap but worth it if you really want your data back. Drive Savers in Novato CA is the industry best (and the priciest) but there are others. Before doing that, there are software programs out there that can retrieve data off otherwise corrupted disks -- Data Rescue is one.


Disk Warrior is another good program that will attempt to create a new directory of your drive. This can work wonders unless your drive has mechanical damage and can't spin up at all.

Best of luck. I'm sure you'll never have to be convinced to back up again.


Tom from Sonoma Co

SoCoTom said...

Another thought: you might be able to put your Mac in Target Mode and access its files from another Mac. That blinking ? might only mean that your Mac can't locate or recognize its startup files; you might be able to start up from your install CD/DVD and run Disk Utility on it to check and maybe repair the drive.

I'd try Target Mode first, though. It wouldn't affect your hard drive at all and if it works you'd be able to copy off any and all files to the other Mac.

If I can help, feel free to email me: geolink@sonic.net.


Kendra said...

Me and my whole family just voted for you (tally plus 5!). Love your video... the job sounds amazing. Good luck!!! BUMMER... is all I can say. Hopefully you get the good news soon to distract you.

Christopher said...

i had a notebook full of travel journals and translation work stolen from my office. devastating. if you need a partner in commiseration, let me know. i'd be happy to share any part of any bottle. (we can branch away from wine as the night goes on.)

Kathleen Bauer said...

Hi Ali. I just read your post, and if you need the opinion of another Mac Genius, my son is available (and he is really good). Give us a call!