Friday, January 30, 2009


On Monday the fax machine started to complain that its toner was low - Which is a lie. A patent lie! It says its toner is low but what it really means is it's toner is at about at 1/3 full. I hate the fax machine and its foofy, powered toner.

I shouldn't hate it, it's  historical , the rumor has it that it was Dorothea Dix' own fax machine. She carried it at Shiloh, it has a little bronze marker and everything. Picturesque sure but it belongs in the Smithsonian not my  mail room.  On Wednesday the machine finally registered empty of toner, which really means it still has about a quarter of the loose, powered toner left inside - Which allows it to foof all over the place while I'm trying to change out the cartridge. Hate. It.

There is also the added joy that the slide thingy that the cartridge goes on to is broken and it doesn't seal, so it has to be held down with pieces of tape. Sometimes it ends well, i.e, not in clouds of toner and sadness and sometimes it ends in clouds of toner and sadness. Many times it ends in sadness. I hate the fax machine.

Thursday I walked in the door to work and saw that the fax needed to be changed and since I was all ready wearing black I decided that this would be a good time to do the deed. So I did it. Good. I stood back to admire my job and to get the faxes that had piled up since the toner went low - And the faxes tumbled out, with a thick, black oily band down the middle... And I thought The last time there were little lines and that resolved itself. Maybe this will resolve it self.  Naive child! Do you know what thick black bands of melty yuck does? They does not resolve! it means something very bad has died and is being eaten by the machine. You can not "resolve" this, for this you have to call service.

Did I mention all this happened at 7:20 am? My boss does not come in at 7:20am.  The machine was vomiting bile and I had to fix it myself. Did I also mention that I don't know a lot about getting the fax serviced? My boss knows about how we go about getting it serviced. I know to call my boss and tell her the machine needs to be fixed and she does something and the service guy appears and fixes it. I now know how to get the machine serviced and it is more than just calling service. You have to first call this woman who does all the ordering and then she isn't in so you have to call her boss who Thanks be to Gawd does come to work at 7:20 am and he told me that I have a service contract and I should call the number on the machine and have them  come and fix the machine.

Fine. By this time I have touched the machine 276 times and washed my hands 276 times.

But. I can't do anything like that without notifying the boss. I have been instructed that she wants to know about everything. By 8:15am she did know about everything and I called service and asked when the service guy would get there because we get a lot of faxes and it could get ugly. She assured me he would call with his ETA.

His ETA turned out to be 3:30pm. I was hoping he would say it couldn't be fixed, but with these old machines they can almost always be fixed because the old machines are made up of things called "parts" and these "parts" things can be ordered. The machine and its nasty, messy powdered toner will live to fax again. Damn it.

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