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Holy cow, am I in stress! I’ve been up since 3am trying to recover my backups, with only partial success. Last Thursday I delivered the master DVD to DiscBank for duplication – 100 DVDs for $350. It was on time and I was feeling quite pleased with myself. I went to lunch with the rest of the committee on Friday in a relaxed frame of mind.

Then I had coffee in the city with a friend from school days. She had previously asked me not to use any of her photos from the school magazine (the printed one) from 50 years ago. No problem, I didn’t scan any and hadn’t used them. But what she meant was that I was not to use ANY photo of her from that time, no matter if she was in a group or what. The blood drained from my face!

Well, I used the original photo of the Avon magazine committee from 1963, I said. No! She didn’t like the way she looked in it. But, but … no, she was insistent. It could not be used now. I said, but it’s too late, the master disc is with the duplicators – it’s too late. “Can’t you stop it?”  No! That was yesterday, it’s already in production. “Well, can’t you ask them to change the photo?”  No, of course not. “Why not?”  Because it can’t be done. “Why not?” They don’t have the software, that’s why, and it’s not their job. “Well, can’t you ask them to blur my face?” Noooo, it’s not possible. “Well, can’t you stop the production?” No, if I do it’ll cost us another $350. “I’ll pay it.” she said.

I tried to tell her that she was worried over nothing, that the photo is fine. But no, I must stop the production. She wouldn’t budge. I must phone DiscBank right then and there and tell them to stop (she’s a lawyer, fgs) She insisted I do it from the restaurant! Handed me her phone so I could dial. I didn’t know the number so she called directory assistance and got it. Then she dialled and handed me the phone to talk.

So I phoned them. No,they hadn’t started it, and they would stop and wait for a new master disc. Not open Saturday, have to be Monday. The reunion is next Saturday. OK, that was bad enough and absolutely spoilt my afternoon. Why did she want this deletion so badly? She felt she looked bad and she’d never be able to show her children and grandchildren. For crying out loud!!! These photos are 51 years old and have been in print all that time.

But another thing intruded. We had been told one of our number had died in 1995, and he was on the roll call for his service in Vietnam. We’d since found he hadn’t died. I had changed the spreadsheet, but I’d forgotten to change the plaque. Yow!

OK, so I’m thinking I’ve had a narrow escape, even if for the wrong reason. But, driving home, I thought, “Hang on here, she’s only one of a group of eight in that photo. Why should she be able to have us all excluded just because of her?” So by the time I got home I was pretty upset. Then I started work on revamping the publication and realised there were actually three group photos with her in them, all groups of eight people or more. My stress levels rose further. I’m not going to delete them all, no way. I was originally going to demonstrate how clever I am by Photoshopping her face in the one photo so that it doesn’t look obvious. But not three! So I set about simply circling and totally blurring her face to unrecognisability in all three photos. They looked ridiculous! I’m angry because it spoils the photo for all of us. I’ve spoken to the others on the committee and they are gobsmacked, like me.

So that’s bad enough, right? Yesterday my computer crashed and I’ve lost the C: drive! It’s possibly recoverable, I think, if only I could remember how to do it. The message is Can’t find Press Ctl-Alt-Del.  I’ve fixed this before but I can’t do it at the moment. OK, I have backups, right? Of course! But the backup is from two days ago, so I’ve lost all the work of yesterday (there was a lot more besides). So at this moment I’m operating from the laptop, but I simply cannot get my Page Plus magazine project back. I’m just going to have to dig my heels in – NO! The master disc cannot be changed, and even if it could be, I refuse to delete these photos. It’s selfish and vain to insist. Bloody hell, these photos were published 51 years ago! They’ve been out there all that time. How can you object to them now?

OK, I still have the master files from two days ago, so I’m just going to have to say, “That’s it.” There’s another aspect – if she doesn’t want her kids and grandkids to see her as she was 51 years ago, then don’t take the DVD. Simple. Don’t show your kids, if that’s you want. In fact, I will make you a special one-off copy with your face blurred if that’s what you want, if you want to look ridiculous, but it will be after the reunion. Meanwhile this has totally spoilt this for me. I’m tense, upset, angry. I’ve just got home from Silver Chain from the IV antibiotic injection and they’ve INSISTED that I must keep my feet above my heart as much as possible. So, no long computer sessions. Ho hum. Bloody hell, from elation to despondent in 36 hours.


2 comments on “Aaaaaarrrrgh!

  1. I remember in one of Bill Bryson’s books he said it appears to be his fate to spend time with each of the stupidest people on the planet. He doesn’t mean people who are intellectually challenged, but people who have intelligence but don’t use it. Just saying…

  2. Pete says:

    Yeah. I can’t say much but lack of intelligence is not the problem. I never want to go through anything like that again.

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