Sharpen Your Sword

Working remotely is becoming the new norm in the COVID-19 pandemic. A laptop or a desktop machine with an internet connection is how many earn their bread and butter. I’m one among them.

A couple of days back, my Macbook Pro fried, out of the blue.

If you’re in Tamil Nadu, India, you would know that the curfew is in place during the time of writing this post and there is no chance that one could get a laptop serviced or purchase a new machine. Most e-commerce stores have stopped shipping to Tamil Nadu, India.

The whole situation put me under crunch. With a deadline nearing at my day job and with a dead laptop there is nothing much that I could do than worrying.

Before fretting too much I remembered my dad getting all his computer requirements met with the help of a local guy who runs a one man business. The pandemic got me thinking that he could not of much help. Boy, I was wrong.

The local computer business guy couldn’t help me with my MacBook Pro. But through his contacts he sourced me a powerful desktop machine.

I’m currently running Ubuntu on the new desktop machine. The setup I currently run is quite fast and I resumed my day job’s work. If you’re curious to know what’s behind the cabinet, here you go.

The local computer guy understood my difficult situation and acted at his best in sourcing a new machine. He had no reason to help but he did, risking his life and business.

The whole incident made me realize a couple of things

  • Small businesses care about people. We should continue to support small businesses even after the pandemic ends.
  • When your day job relies on electronic devices, ensure to have proper fallback during outages.
  • Exposure to different operating systems is good.

Amidst the chaos, I visited a nearby authorized Apple serviced provider to diagnose my MacBook Pro. I hated their service because of the way they acted while dealing with customers. Also, I was charged 2450 INR (~ 33 USD) to diagnose what went wrong. I’m not sure if this is the norm that Apple imposed.

The worst thing is I had to spend 2450 INR to find out that I have to further spend 37,500 INR to fix my MacBook Pro.

All these incidents got me thinking if I should ever return to using Apple products.

If you’re working remotely, ensure to have proper fall back. When the battle drum beats, it is too late to sharpen your sword.

Help Comes At A Cost — Be Intentful

I love and raise dogs. I started training dogs as a hobby and now I teach people to train their dogs.

I get calls from people inquiring about training dogs. Most would be interested to know what I charge and would move on after the initial discussion. A few would take the classes. Another few would say they would get back and after a few days they come back asking for “HELP”.

While asking for a help is reasonable amongst peers and family, understand that it is NOT possible for me to help everyone I talk to. I have a family to feed and a life to live. Like yours, my time is valuable to me. I’m sure nobody wants to trade their time for NOTHING.

Despite the above reasons, I take time to help answer dog training questions I get via the FREE Dog Training for Dog Parents community that I manage. When I ask people to join the community and search for or ask their dog training questions, people get back with all sorts of excuses —

  • “I don’t use Facebook.”
  • “I don’t know to use Facebook groups.”
  • “How do I search on Facebook?”

It is this apathetic behaviour that makes me NOT want to invest my time to help out. Don’t know how to use Facebook? Read their help section. Don’t know to use Facebook groups? Try to google.

If you want HELP be intentful. Be willing to show that you care before you ask.