Jan 9, 2008

a true story

I stop at a local fast food joint this afternoon, since the wife has a migraine and I'm in a hurry to get to the legislative forum. The place is empty except for the guy on duty, who assembles my order and starts to ring it up on a computer register.

"Oh, crap," he says. "Do you know anything about computers? I've got this weird virus message."

"You're using Windows?" I ask, incredulous.

"Yeah. Look, man, I'm totally computer illiterate. What do I do?"

I ask him if I can hop behind the counter and check it out. He says okay. Sure enough, an Internet Explorer window is open, warning about some German-sounding virus. "Click the baloon to eliminate the threat," it warns, and a little icon pops up on the start menu.

I close the IE window, and the screen returns to the regular checkout. "Don't click anything else," I say. "Better call your manager. Your computer has no antivirus, and you can be pretty sure it's already infected, and he's gonna have to deal with it."

Walking around the counter, I return to my proper role. I plop down $8, and he reaches under the counter. "Here, man," he says, handing me a paper cup. "Have a soda, on the house."

Dr. Pepper it is.

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