Sunday, May 28, 2017

Marion's Computer Argus



     Marion had a yellow lollipop stuck to her hair. Argus, her mobile computer, suggested that she take a picture of it for her PlaceBook.com fans. Argus was a small cube with a plastic handle on top.

     “Argus, what would I do without you? And you’re right, folks might get a good laugh out of seeing that lollipop stuck to my head,” Marion mused.

     Marion used a soapy wash cloth and got the lollipop out of her hair (much to her relief).

     Marion wanted to publish a book of people and places around town in the style of the Internet site PlaceBook.com. She wanted to have the pictures set in each page in different angles with photographic corners attached to them. She had written various articles on people in the city she lived in, and now she wanted to feature those stories in a scrapbook-style-book.

     She took Argus with her to the coffee shop and snapped a few pictures of the place and posted this caption under the pictures:

     “Hi everyone, this is where I hang out practically every morning. I usually have a bagel or two, with cream cheese and some coffee to go with it.”

     After an hour or two, she took Argus to the flower shop and took several pictures of the different flower arrangements. The caption under these pictures was:

     “Isn’t it a marvelous day? Imagine seeing a whole slew of bouquets of these flowers at your doorstep first thing in the morning?”

     Argus laughed because he had a good sense of humor.

     Marion then, walked around the block and here again she took pictures of the houses and the trees that lined them. Argus interrupted her reverie:

     “Marion, you have a blog to write this morning, please don’t forget about it,” Argus pointed out.

     “Don’t worry Argus, I’m still sorting my thoughts out,” Marion responded.

     When Marion reached her home, she donned on a comfortable shirt and sweat pants with socks and started to type away at her computer keyboard.

     “Argus, please use your WiFi connection with this stand-alone computer to record a copy of this blog that I am currently typing,” Marion requested of Argus.

     Marion’s blog was about a student rally at the local college to build a new bookstore within a revamped University Center. The Center was going to have a facelift, and was going to include a pizzeria and sandwich counter. The students wanted to make their books and supply buying experiences to be happy ones by giving them a larger area in which to maneuver in.

     “Argus, please spellcheck and seal it off with my signature and send a copy to the Dean of the University. Then post it as a regular literary contribution to the blog spot forum,” she said.

     “Will do, also would you like me to order lunch from Luigi’s? And if so, will it be your usual Wednesday lunch order? It is after all, Spaghetti Wednesday! Would you like to substitute ground turkey meatballs in place of the beef ones?” Argus inquired.

     “Yes, to all of your lunch questions, and ask them if they deliver,” Marion requested.

     “Will do, M’am.”

     “Argus, we need greeting cards for a few family events coming up soon. Can you bring up some sites on the computer where I can customize each card with a picture of a bouquet of pink and white roses?” Marion was excited about this particular greeting card project of hers.

     “Marion, the Dean at the University has emailed you. You might want to read it, because it’s marked urgent,” Argus said.

     Marion brought up her email browser and clicked open the Dean’s email. The gist of the email was that the University was experiencing budget cuts and it was questionable whether they could foot the bill to enlarge the bookstore. However, a committee had been formed to look into the matter and the Dean hoped that the matter would be resolved in a timely matter and that everyone, all around, would be happy with the final decision.

     “Argus, please send a quick reply to the Dean to thank him for the update on the University Bookstore situation.”

     An hour and a half later, the delivery man from Luigi’s showed up at Marion’s doorstep with her spaghetti and turkey meatballs. After finishing off her hearty lunch, she began to plan out this photo journal book that she was writing. The format she knew, would be like PlaceFriend.com, with the photos in photographic corners and branded with wacky captions. Then Argus interrupted her train of thought.

     “Marion, you forgot to take your vitamins this morning, perhaps you should do so now,” Argus chimed in.

     “Thanks Argus, where would I be without you?”

     Marion contributed articles to Leah, a friend of hers at the local Women’s Journal. Anything, from cupcake recipes that she had experimented in baking, to reviews and ratings of the newest books, music and movies were fair game for article contributions.

     “Argus, call the library and ask whoever is available to compile some women’s magazines, so that I can research the latest articles on exercise trends,” Marion requested of Argus.

     “Duly noted M’am, I’ll get on it right away!”

     “Argus, thank you for getting the website for customizable greeting cards up on my screen. I have the perfect graphic of the pink and white roses that I will upload in the blank space of each greeting card,” Marion said.

     “Marion, you can also send the cards directly from that website,” Argus helpfully commented.

     “Thank you Argus, I shall take them up on that. I believe that you have my sister’s address on file, along with the other recipients?” Marion asked.

     “Yes, I have populated all of the blank spaces with the pertinent names and corresponding addresses. All you have to do is to press the purchase button to finalize the sale,”Argus instructed.

     Marion did what Argus told her to do and the purchase transaction went through without a hitch. She decided to phone her friend Leah at the Women’s Journal offices to ask if she could rummage through some of the pictures that had never been in print before.

     “Of course, you can look through them…feel free to use any of them for the book that you’re compiling,” Leah said.

     The offices were walking distance from her house, so she put on her tennis shoes and trekked over to the Women’s Journal Headquarters.

     Leah said hi to her. She led Marion to their basement that acted as a repository of bins for the extra photographs. Some of them were of landmarks, others of the ocean, others of the sky scrapers, still others were of monuments. Marion already had some thoughts on some of the creative captions that she was going to tag some of these pictures with.

     Leah also showed her how to bring up some background designs for her scrapbook-style-photo-journal-book. In return for all of her generosity, Marion treated Leah to a casual dinner along the busy boulevard.

     In retrospect, Marion had never thought to ask Leah about the use of the photographs. She credits Argus, for keeping her on her toes.

     Marion’s next project was to support the University Bookstore cause. In the following week, a petition was supposed to be circulated to officially make a request for the expansion of the University Bookstore. Argus made sure that Marion didn’t miss her opportunity to put her John Hancock on the petition.

     After many weeks, Argus had done some Internet research and he verbally told Marion, that the University Bookstore, would indeed be expanded.

     All’s well that ends well…

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