It's often computers I need help with and this picture that was sent to me recently captured my feelings exactly.
But today it's my sewing machine. I've been having trouble with the tension, with the thread breaking and generally being stopped every five minutes with some little problem. Finally I decided to stop making my self irritable I put the machine, which is only about 3 years old, aside and pulled out the one it replaced -- a Riccar (which I only in the last few years learned is basically a Bernina made in Japan, circa 1960) which I've had literally for 50 years. It has sewn maybe millions of miles of seams -- well, certainly many hundreds of thousands. It was beginning to limp, the presser foot lift is sometimes a problem, it rattles and makes a lot of noise and probably would stop if I got it a general tune up. The feed dogs seemed to be stuck. Well, I solved the last problem this morning. I found a lot of lint under the feed dogs and removed it and they are working just fine.
So, the new machine goes to a service place one day this week and the work I have to do today and tomorrow and the rest of the week will be done on the old machine and possibly I will take it in for a tune up the day I pick up the newer one. The older machine was made to last. It has only a couple of plastic parts, it weighs at least fifty pounds. It does nothing fancy -- simply zigzags other than straight sewing. But it's the kind of machine I really like. Made to last and it has lasted.
No computer today is made to last; they're all made to be superceded by the next model. And, indeed, my MacBook which I've been quite happy with, is about two versions behind and I'm beginning to long for a new one, slightly bigger. I don't want more bells and whistles, I just want to know I have the memory and that nothing is going to go badly wrong all of a sudden in the middle or something important. I have many younger members of my family who are far more competent than I on computers. But the truth is no one in the family is more competent on sewing machines than I -- when I arrive at a problem I can't solve, as today, I go to the white pages -- yes, they still exist -- and look for help.
The mid-70s are a surprise! Part of me remains in the 50s -- age, I mean, not decade of 20th century. It's a joy ride, new experiences land in my lap and I've become a better quilter, poet, writer than I expected. It's a rich life for a person never rich financially. Hey, this is what the mid-70s are like!