The Downsides of Cyberschooling Geeklings

We will make a dress

Image by Brave Heart via Flickr

Yes, of course, everything normally goes picture perfect in Topsy-Techieland.  Our bandwidth speeds remain constant, our ideas come to us in Hi-Def, and little birds and mice dress us and feed us.

But once in a long while there is a cog in the wheel that doesn’t quite get oiled, and all Vista breaks loose.

(Need to tread lightly here, because I might need a certain geekling to guest post for me this week, and I really can’t afford to tick him off at the moment)

Anyhoo – – the unoiled cog can sometimes come in the form of a young man, who shall remain unnamed, who happens to download many, many programs and games into his computer each week.  It is possible – – I suppose – –  that the normal, average, 14-year-old checks thoroughly and completely the authenticity and safety of each and every program downloaded into their computer.  But I darn well doubt it.  So why should I be surprised that, at least in one respect, my 14-year-old is perfectly average??

Cut to … yesterday.

At the hour of his daily online classroom conference, the unnamed young man finds himself completely unable to type anything, navigate the web, or even cut off the computer because it is so dang ill.  Viruses have taken it over and are holding it for a ransom sum that not many 14-yr-olds have access to these days.

Even though I haven’t been in public school for a while, I would imagine that it is something akin to finding out that your school has suddenly burned down.  There is a sense of elation, at first, because you know you will miss tomorrow’s science test.  But when the truth sinks in you realize that your school was actually a pretty cool place, and you are downright bummed that it is gone. Add to this the realization that your school also happens to be your video arcade, your social hall, and your connection to the outside world, and you become more than a little bummed – – you are seriously pissed off.

Add to this frustration a mom who lays on guilt with “I told you that downloading that crap was going to kill your computer one day” and you’ve got an actual teenage meltdown on your hands. 

So, last night, instead of the 3,459 things I really needed to accomplish, I spent the night reformatting a certain young man’s computer.  Much was lost in the fray – – some key documents and programs that meant a lot to him.  But much was gained as well.  I truly believe that this geekling will be a LOT more careful about what and where he downloads from in the future.

I’d share more, but the little birds are getting impatient for me to let them dust the computer screen.  Ah, the life of a Topsy-Techie homeschooler….

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