After 40 years as a computer programmer and game developer—and the passing of his wife of 47 years—Rick has retired and is now living in Ye Olde Folks Home, where he still tinkers with tech and likes to write these amusing and/or thoughtful tales about his storied life.

The FCAL Project
Pepe Le Pew Finds New Lodgings
In Memoriam: Dale Lear
Bingo Bedlam at Ye Olde Folks Home
There’s a Shortage of Perfect Movies…
One Day at the DMV
A Visitor from Microsoft
“He Who Should Not Be Named”
Downton… Abbey?
This Home is a Liver-Free Zone
My 9/11 Rememberances
My Yearly Pumpkin Spice Rant
Done In By Baker’s Square
My Eulogy for Alice
“Dear Rikki…”
A Clean, Well-lighted Place for Books
Memories of my First Computer
A Little Excitement at the Staff Meeting
The Tale of Mrs. Butler
Sun, Sand, and a Margarita
“Thou Shalt Not Steal”
Troubleshooting at Ye Olde Folks Home
Stories of my Mother
I’ve Heard Angels Sing
Elevator Mishap at the Eye Clinic
One Day at Fair, Isaac
Saturday Morning Cartoons
A Sprig of Parsley
Fun With Recruitment Ads
Leave Her to Heaven
“Squirrel!”
Bring me Dave Bringle!
Beware! The Oldsters Are Coming!
Life Among the Progressives
A Family Ritual While Watching Masterpiece
The Unforgettable General Oppy
“Don’t Even THINK About Parking Here”
A Dubious Plan Gone Awry
The Singing Christmas Tree!
One Day in the Hospital Lab
The Legend of the Broken Timer
Nelson’s Fruit Stand
This One Time in Glee Club…
Star Trek References for the Win
Family Psalm, Stuck in Lodi
Vacation in Branson
Clyde and Ruth Revisited
COVID Policies During my Wife’s Fatal Illness
I Guess I’m the Shadow IT Department Now
The Tale of Clyde and Ruth
My Garden of Gethsemane Story
We Might Get a Virus!

I Guess I’m the Shadow IT Department Now

“That nice boy who knows so much about computers.”

That’s me!

If one of our residents has a problem with their phone, a TV remote, their computer, or anything else involving tech, I’m the guy they are usually (unofficially and informally!) directed to see.

This is made hilariously more difficult by the fact that everyone involved are octogenarians who can’t seem to remember my name.

A few weeks ago I heard people asking around as to where “Eric, that guy who knows computers” could be found.

“Did you mean me?” I asked.

They did. Gloria in 102 was having a problem. “She doesn’t know how to disconnect her computer from the wall.”

Odd request, but okay, let’s check it out.

Gloria’s laptop was on the fritz so she was going to take it to a repair shop. She had put it into a cloth bag for transport. But she had also slid her cable modem into the same bag, with power cords and the cable wiring still connected.

“Oh, you don’t need to take the modem in, they don’t need that,” I told her. The modem was still on inside the bag, restricting airflow to the device and making it dangerously hot, so I pulled that out and set it aside.

She was ecstatic that she didn’t need to lug all that extra bulky equipment around and thanked me profusely.

Yesterday I heard people in the lobby asking around for “Pete, the computer guy,” so I asked—again—if maybe I was the object of their search.

“Pete! There you are!” Gloria said as she found me.

She said that she had a batch of cookies ready to go into the oven as a thank you gift for my help, but didn’t know to which apartment it was to be delivered.

“That sounds lovely, thank you,” I said, writing down my name and apartment number so she wouldn’t forget.

“Oh, ‘Rick,’ I see, I had the wrong name,” she apologized.

Several hours later I got a delivery of two dozen chocolate chip cookies (my favorite!) fresh off the cooling rack.

“Cast thy bread upon the waters; for thou shalt find it after many days.” —Ecclesiastes 11:1