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When you work on, around, in or near computers all day, you get to a point where your frustration level can only be relieved by "adjusting" and / or "arranging" your computer and possibly your entire computer area. If this was an education course it would most likely be titled
Creative Computer Destruction 101.
Although this is a very good way to relieve computer related stress, if you are actually foolish enough to attempt this at home, be sure to wear safety gear. We strongly suggest a full suit of Kevlar, and good eye protection just in case you get carried away during the "adjusting" process. Some additional equipment to either borrow, buy, or dig out of the garage are assorted power tools, a few tire inner tubes, lots of duct tape, rope, a blowtorch and quite possibly a catapult. Several computers were indeed harmed during these techniques.
Once you get your appropriate gear, lets get started !!
The Mouse - The Keyboard - The Monitor - The Case - Circuit Boards - The Scanner - The Printer - The Hard Drive - The CD-ROM Drive - The Floppy - The CD-ROM - The Manuals - The Furniture
Lesson One: The Mouse ...
Mice are good for several stress relieving techniques, and we will cover two examples.
Grasp the mouse firmly at the end of the cord and swing it wildly over your head in an exaggerated circular motion . Yell wildly and release the mouse in the general direction of either a monitor, a pyramid of empty beer cans or a computer technician [WARNING, hitting computer technicians with a mouse in this manner is against the law in certain states].
Borrow a skeet thrower from one of your sportsman buddies. It is important at this point to either invite the sportsman buddy, or creatively lie as to what you are going to use said skeet thrower for. Wrap the cord around the mouse tightly and send it on the trajectory of your choice. If you invited your buddy to assist, we suggest trying to actually blow the sucker out of the air with several well placed shotgun blasts. Two points to consider here are how well you trust the person who has the afore-mentioned shotgun, and how exactly you got all those empty beer cans you may have used in the sling-shot technique prior to attempting the skeet technique.
Lesson Two: The Keyboard ...
Keyboards can be very stressful, as they are the most common interactive tool used with a computer. There are two interesting things you can do with keyboards, one of which involves a bit of sleight of hand on your part.
Belt sander technique:
Secure the offending keyboard in a good vice, and with a vigorous back and forth motion, apply a belt sander to the key area. After removing any hint of a symbol on the face of the keyboard, dust it off and switch it with anyone you can think of that seems overly confidant with computers. It may be a good idea to do this when they are not home.
Power drill technique:
This requires some skill with a power drill, and at least a one inch (bigger is better) flat drill bit. This also calls for securing the keyboard in a vice as in the previous technique. Place the drill bit between any two rows of keys, pull the trigger and move the drill in a random pattern in and around the keyboard. The result is actually quite stunning and provides up to a few blissful moments of fast paced action similar to placing a bag of popcorn in the microwave after cutting it in half lengthwise.
Lesson Three: The Monitor ...
The catapult technique:
First you need a catapult. If you know someone who has a working catapult (which in itself is interesting) try to convince them of the merits of stress reduction. If you need to make one yourself I am sure there are blueprints available, with several designs to choose from, somewhere out on the Internet. A low cost and equally fun solution is to make a heavy duty slingshot using two good size relatively closely placed trees, and several choice pieces cut from tire inner tubes. Attach the inner tube pieces to the trees. Design some sort of trigger device to hold the sling in position while you load the monitor and procure some sort of a target. Pre-selection of a target is a good idea and cuts down immensely on any stress generated from the fact that you are searching for a target while you have a loaded catapult in your back yard. Good examples of targets might include a cheap child pool, a picnic table, a soon to be demolished shed, a bigger monitor, any assorted piece of computer related furniture or a full size stuffed bear on loan from a good natured taxidermist. BAD examples of targets might include a neighbors pet, a moving or non moving computer technicians vehicle, a relative, your home or your significant other's china cabinet. Some other often forgotten points to give consideration to during this technique are the size of the monitor and glass breakage. Monitors have a tendency towards glass breakage at speeds greater than 25 mph which can be significantly reduced by placing large amounts of duct tape over the screen area. The size and weight of the monitor also needs to be considered. We lean towards the 14 or 15 inch variety, but it's mostly a matter of physics vs. aesthetics.
Lesson Four: The Case ...
Cases are boring for the most part, but if you damaged any wildlife during the previous technique and are feeling the least bit guilty over it, you might want to create some sort of bird house. This is where you can use your imagination to create something both functional and pleasing to the eye. If you are looking for a more practical use for a computer case we would suggest being the first person on your block to have a really interesting computer case mailbox.
Lesson Five: Circuit Boards ...
Circuit boards come in many shapes and sizes. If noxious odors don't bother you, you can create a wonderful pattern by using a blowtorch to ignite any plastic pieces you see protruding from the board, and / or create designs of your choosing on any large area of the board in general. Adequate ventilation is a must due to the inherent dangers of inhaling plastic while it is on fire. Good practice might also include rehearsing the stop drop and roll technique in case of accidental ignition of a stray body part, and keeping a fire extinguisher close at hand (safety first you know). If you are looking for a safer method of relieving stress with circuit boards, we hear that enough of them make excellent paneling.
Lesson Six: Scanners ...
We are currently working on a TOP SECRET project to convert scanners into etch-a-sketches. More on that as it develops.
Lesson Seven: Printers ...
I have a personal vendetta against printers in general and consider them a communist plot to reduce productivity in the office environment. IF you are proficient with fireworks placement, AND it is not illegal in your state, consider the thought of placing large amounts of left over fireworks into any crevice available on the printer in question. Another proven stress reliever is doable, but requires 20 or 30 size "D" model rocket engines, a skateboard, plenty of duct tape and a remote igniter with at least 100 feet of cable. Place the printer on the skateboard in whatever aerodynamic method you prefer and then commence placing the engines in a circular pattern around the printer. Attach the remote igniter so that the majority of engines will fire at once. You need to consider the "runway" you will need and a ready escape route should things go awry. This event is rated much like the Olympics with high scores given in the possibility you actually exceed mach1.
Lesson Eight: Hard Drives ...
The key thing here is to open the hard drive before you begin any of the following stress reducing techniques.
1) Formatting technique: Using the claw end of a hammer, scratch intricate designs on the platters. You can also use a dremel tool with assorted tips to achieve a number of fantastic formatting effects. A low level format can be achieved in the basement, while a high level format can be attempted while standing on a table. Its a good idea to clean your shoes before standing on the table.
2) Partitioning technique: A good tool to use to partition your hard drive is a hacksaw. If you don't care much about your tools (or you are using borrowed tools), and you have an excess of testosterone, you may also achieve excellent partitions using a table saw or a skill saw.
3) Defragmenting technique: Once you have finished working on your hard drive, you should pick up any and all assorted pieces you find scattered around the area where all the formatting and partitioning was accomplished. This is called DEFRAGMENTING. Its always a good idea to defragment your work area after any long computer session.
If any of the above techniques are frightening to you, you can simply remove the platters and use them as miniature Frisbees. This can be quite enjoyable unless you end up being the one catching them. They are fairly heavy and although they fly well, they seem to have an uncanny natural affinity for windows, expensive lamps, and craniums.
Lesson Nine: CD-ROM Drives ...
CD-ROM drives are incredibly boring. The only useful thing you can do with a spare drive to my knowledge is power it off in the open position, and with liberal use of duct tape, create a fully functional cup holder for your desk. Our design team is looking into the possible conversion of these units into really big laser pointers. Work on this project is currently on hold due to the fact we all watched a sci-fi movie recently and a heated discussion sprang up as to the value of an oversized laser pointer vs. a ugly square laser gun complete with a ugly square holster.
Lesson Ten: Floppy Disks ...
Do you remember as a kid, taking a baseball or playing card and attaching it to the frame of your bike in order to get that cool motorcycle sound as it rattles on the spokes? We found out quite by accident that a similar effect can be had with spare floppy disks. The twist here is that it involves the automobile of your choice, preferably your friend's. It may be wise to pick a different friend at this point due to the nature of the previous techniques. An interesting sound can be obtained by fastening large amounts of floppy disks in a circular pattern around all four tires of a car. The speed at which this remains intact is directionally proportional to the amount of duct tape used to stabilize the apparatus. Mileage may vary.
Lesson Eleven: CD-ROMS ...
We don't know why it is so, but CD-ROMS are much more fun to adapt to stress reduction techniques than the drives themselves. I personally keep a collection of AOL CD-ROMS in my car at all times. They make excellent ice scrapers. They also make fully functional coasters. The most amazing thing I have ever done with a CD-ROM is to use the ominous "microwave technique". Strangely, this is also best done with a friends microwave. The technique is simple enough in itself and requires the CD-ROM to be placed shiny side up in the EXACT center of the microwave. We suggest a carousel model to achieve even results. After serious and painstaking scientific tests it has been determined that 3 seconds is about right. You can see it quite nicely if this is done in a darkened kitchen. The result resembles a miniature lightning storm with sort of a blue flame running along the outer edge. The end product usually resembles a mosaic and we would not expect it to contain the same data after this technique as it had prior to the technique.
Lesson Twelve: Manuals ...
Manuals are arguably the single most stressful items related to computers. Tossing them out an open window may relieve a small percentage of stress, with even higher levels of stress reduction obtained by flinging them back and forth in the back yard until the binders let go. If you accompany this with wild screaming while barefoot it seems to be the most effective. A caution here is to note how far away you live from a mental institution. Mental institutions usually write these manuals, and don't take kindly to viewing their work scattered about your back yard with binders and pages in disarray.
Lesson Thirteen: Furniture ...
Most computer related furniture does not burn well in its natural state. This is a well known fact among people who burn computer furniture for a living. To significantly increase the flammable qualities of these items you need to break them up in smaller pieces. We suggest ramming into them at speeds of about 20 mph with the vehicle you have all the floppy disks duct taped to. This results in only minor damage to the vehicle in question, and seems to break the furniture up into a more manageable size. To further increase the flammable qualities of the item add kerosene. The equation we go by to determine the optimal volume of kerosene to use is as follows --- 1 gallon of kerosene for every 2 cubic feet of desk. As a footnote we would add that metal chairs throw this equation off a lot, and can cause an increase in damage to the vehicle at ramming speeds.
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This page was last updated on 08/21/02 04:01:19 PM