User Error

Posted by jael on Apr 10, 2011 in Spiritual Journey, Technology


It happened two days ago.


I wrote you a post.

It was beautiful.





But, not saccharine.

It was a post that wrote itself.

I wrote it by the pool as my kids swam in their uncle’s pool in Florida.

It was fun to write and its results pleased me.

As I finished I went to hit “Save Draft,” and the computer sent an error message.

“Your computer is not connected to the Internet.”

I’m sure you anticipate the punch line.

The computer ate my post like a hungry Early Bird dinner at Golden Corral gobbles up fresh brownies when the dessert bell rings.

I couldn’t back arrow to it.

I couldn’t find it.

The husband, usually my ace-in-the-hole Help Desk rescue, couldn’t retrieve it.

It was gone.

User Error.

I think the phrase User Error frustrates me more than parking tickets.

At least with parking tickets, I know what I did to earn the penalty. With parking tickets, it’s pretty simple: I either parked in the wrong place, or I stayed in the legal space too long. My bad all the way with parking tickets.

User Error however, maddens me, because I often don’t know what I did wrong, but still have to pay the price. In this case, a pretty lovely and feel-good post that captured a sweet, family moment.

User Error puts all the blame on me without apology or explanation.

User Error creates paranoia and suspicion.

When will WordPress next fail me?
What does the computer have against me?
What did I do wrong?
I didn’t mean to hurt you, Internet Connection!
I’m sorry!

Aren’t relationships like this sometimes?

Do you ever feel that seizure of confidence with a person during an interaction, that toggle that signals something’s amiss?

At least computers tell you upfront, User Error.

I wonder what it would be like if people came with User Error messages.

What would it be like if we knew immediately that a behavior or comment had hurt another?

I wonder if it would make us more careful and forgiving.

What would my days look like if my family and friend’s foreheads came equipped with User Error screens.

It’s loss enough to have the computer eat a good post,  I don’t want my User Errors to blister my relationships.

May I seek the Face of Grace in all my interactions to avoid User Errors and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.

I did my best, it wasn’t much
I couldn’t feel, so I tried to touch
I’ve told the truth, I didn’t come to fool you
And even though
It all went wrong
I’ll stand before the Lord of Song
With nothing on my tongue but Hallelujah!

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