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Friday, November 30, 2007

Caught in a Web

As I sit in my car dealer’s service waiting area, with experts working on my SUV’s brakes, I’m feeling like a wise man atop a mountain in China.

I’m getting very philosophical, pondering the value of my time.

I’m not trapped here; I’ve chosen this. Parking my ass in this stale lounge for a couple of hours—instead of out and about in a loaner car—made sense because the waiting area features wireless Internet access.

I predicted I could check my e-mail accounts, keep in touch with clients, get up to speed on world events and sports news, and even look into some of your blogs.

I predicted incorrectly. The wireless portal here, it turns out, blocks a few categories of sites.

Like “News.”

Comment: What are they afraid of? It seems especially odd because I’m watching CNN on the TV screen right in front of me.

Also blocked: “Sports.”

Comment: This one floors me. I hate to be sexist, but … nine of the eleven people lingering here are men, and few things pass men’s time as quickly as reading useless stories about useless sporting events.

I can’t get to my e-mail accounts because “Organizational E-mail” is verboten.

Comment: One might think it’s the most obvious thing to enable customers to access. One would be wrong.

So here I am, shut off from 75% of the Web—about 99% of what I want to do.

I take the plunge into the next level of Internet hell, but “Social Networking Sites” is next on the hit list.

Comment: Blogs? No way. We wouldn’t want our waiting guests to see their time fly by, would we?!?

With a sigh, I resort to the ultimate time-waster. Yes, I head for the free games available on the Orbitz site. (If you haven’t yet checked these out, I recommend you don’t. In particular, avoid "Stacker" and "8-Ball;" don't say I didn't warn you.)

Leaning back in my faux leather chair, I resign myself to 90 minutes or more as a mindless blob.

Nope. The portal blocks access to “Entertainment” sites as well.

Comment: Grrrrr. I think I’d have better Internet access atop a mountain in China.

21 Comments:

At December 01, 2007 7:17 AM, Blogger missy replied to my musings ...

I waste so much of my online stuff doing facebook! Argh.

 
At December 01, 2007 4:27 PM, Blogger Nessa replied to my musings ...

Our firewall at work prevents us from going online to purchase bras but allows emails with penis enhancements.

 
At December 01, 2007 9:33 PM, Blogger Godwhacker replied to my musings ...

The bastards! Don't take this sitting down David ;)

 
At December 01, 2007 9:48 PM, Blogger Mike replied to my musings ...

But I'll bet that porn isn't blocked...or new car sites...or that paper I wrote and lost about the socieoeconomic ramifications of the Napoleonic Wars in Europe, because, if anything will make time slow or even reverse, it's that mass of drivel...

 
At December 02, 2007 2:38 PM, Blogger :P fuzzbox replied to my musings ...

Porno baby, if they blocked that as well then the mutha's should be strung up.

 
At December 02, 2007 4:20 PM, Blogger Phats replied to my musings ...

OK see now I am playing these dumb games no clue Orbitz had games wow.

I know a lot of places that block access to certain sites, but not that many just stupid man.

I see the Devils escaped Davidson

 
At December 02, 2007 6:49 PM, Blogger David Amulet replied to my musings ...

Missy: I have avoided Facebook. So far.

Nessa: Neither block would affect me.

GW: I'm mad as hell and I'm not gonna take it anymore!

Mike: That sounds like one great paper--too bad it's lost.

Fuzz: I didn't try that. But I was close.

Phats: They are addictive. I saw some dude playing one when I was waiting for a flight a couple of months ago ... the rest is history! Duke had a test w/ Davidson; Clemson did w/ Purdue, too.

-- david

 
At December 02, 2007 9:27 PM, Blogger Barbara (aka Layla) replied to my musings ...

How stupid of them to block all the good stuff? Are they trying to get their customers irate and pissed off BEFORE they see the car repair bill?

 
At December 03, 2007 10:28 AM, Blogger Perplexio replied to my musings ...

I was just waiting for you to say, that they also blocked porn sites which was odd considering the stack of magazines with the pages stuck together in the men's room.

 
At December 03, 2007 10:31 PM, Blogger On My Watch replied to my musings ...

it's probably because you didn't buy the extended warranty. :-)

 
At December 04, 2007 7:22 AM, Blogger DaBich replied to my musings ...

YOu've gotta be kidding me? What DO they allow access to??? Prayer rooms???

 
At December 05, 2007 7:35 AM, Blogger David Amulet replied to my musings ...

Barbara: That's what I was thinking. A boneheaded move.

Perplexio: I didn't check those sites ... even though they leave me little choice.

OMW: I've given them enough money they should not only provide me free Internet but also a free computer!

DaBich: I wasn't able to find much.

-- david

 
At December 05, 2007 1:13 PM, Blogger Jeff replied to my musings ...

Were you at least allowed on google???

 
At December 05, 2007 4:16 PM, Blogger cube replied to my musings ...

Those public internet access portals are not to be trusted. I just resign myself to a book because I refuse to sit & watch the vapid Tyra Banks show which always seems to be playing at my dealership.

 
At December 05, 2007 6:39 PM, Blogger David Amulet replied to my musings ...

Jeff: I could use Google and Yahoo!, but I couldn't access much that I searched for. Ugh.

Cube: I couldn't even pull up Tyra Banks on the Internet.

-- david

 
At December 05, 2007 8:21 PM, Blogger The Phoenix replied to my musings ...

You should've gone to Starbucks or something instead.

 
At December 06, 2007 8:37 AM, Blogger Stacy The Peanut Queen replied to my musings ...

Amazingly stupid, isn't it?

They used to block blogs and star gossip sites here at work but we'd get penis enhancement junk mail ALL THE TIME.

Go figure.

 
At December 06, 2007 1:01 PM, Blogger David Amulet replied to my musings ...

Phoenix: Unfortunately, Starbucks doesn't do brakes.

PQ: Perhaps they left access open to blogs about stars' penis enlargements!

--- david

 
At December 06, 2007 4:32 PM, Blogger Janet replied to my musings ...

Sports? News? Those are such odd categories to block. I can't get to My Space from my school computer but that I understand. Wanting to know what's going on in the world is another issue entirely.

 
At December 07, 2007 9:29 AM, Anonymous LisaBinDaCity replied to my musings ...

At least your place has wireless access. At my repair shop, I'm buried 4 stories down in a basement with bad coffee and even worse tv.

Feh ;-)

 
At December 07, 2007 3:46 PM, Blogger David Amulet replied to my musings ...

Janet: Something tells me MySpace would be blocked due to that whole "social networking" thing. Drat.

Lisa: That's crappy. YOu need to leave NYC. (As if my stories of DC sell you on that idea.)

-- david

 

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