Backwoods Justice on a Gateway Laptop

What We Do in Oklahoma to Badly Behaved Electronics
Part 1 of 4 in the series…

Every year, I dabble only superfically in what is known in storm chaser circles as “techno-chasing,” where some of the most recent communications technology is applied to gain success afield. Believe me: Compared to most other storm observers (including my good friend RJ Evans) I’m a very primitive minimalist in this regard.

Still, nearly every device I use breaks, malfunctions, spews errors, or fails out of the box! Laptops, modems, scanners, radios, phones, cameras, camcorders, you name it. Nothing has proven fully immune. The Meatwagon itself, maligned by its reputation as an ugly, domestic, gas-guzzling junk heap, was far more durable and trustworthy than almost any electronic device I’ve ever tried on multiple chase trips.

Where has the common sense, Middle American ethic of craftsmanship and “built to last” gone in manufacturing, particularly of electronics?

This seemed a ripe topic for a BLOG rant. Instead, in discussing this with RJ, we agreed that it isn’t enough just to complain about badly built electronics and the utterly idiotic concept of “planned obsolescence.” We had to take action. So we did.

In the spirit of Independence Day, it was time to render ourselves independent from shoddy workmanship and inept manufacturing, and to dispense some classic, backwoods, Okie redneck justice.

The first device to pay the price was RJ’s crappy old Gateway 2000 laptop (at upper center in this view). It couldn’t do anymore what it was supposed to do, and simply had to be dispatched to the Great Gateway Graveyard in the sky.

Planned obsolescence — take this! If you thought overclocking the CPU or experiencing the “blue screen of death” was bad for a laptop, this puts things in perspective. As RJ continued to fire hollow point .22s through the screen, the holes became more and more numerous. Head shots gave way to body shots, one after another.

Then things got really good. RJ pumped slug after slug through the offending device, kicking up the red dirt and blasting shrapnel hither and yon. Here’s a close-up of the last shot, showing what happens when a Gateway laptop runs afoul in Oklahoma. It had a “FATAL ERROR” all right!

After justice was dispensed, the offending machine was examined front and back before its sorry worthless carcass was properly disposed.

Coming soon: Destroying a Dell PC with a Rifle


3 Responses to “Backwoods Justice on a Gateway Laptop”

  1. VOF Johnson on July 6th, 2006 3:37 pm

    Let me know when you get serious about this stuff and I’ll bring some REAL firepower down to you. AK-47 7.62 NATO, 45-70 govt buffalo gun, sawed off 12 ga coach gun, 44 Mag, 9mm parabelum…etc. Might even be able to find a couple of RPG rounds to finish things off with… 😉

  2. tornado on July 6th, 2006 6:16 pm

    As soon will be mentioned in the next entry, we did have a Glock and a .357 potentially available, but decided to use small arms fire this time in order to withhold any pretense of mercy or “quick kill” on these POS machines. However, in the future, we may gladly accept this offer! >;-)

  3. Marcia on July 7th, 2006 9:34 am

    I was very sad the last day I saw my ’78 Old Station Wagon. She was far more reliable than the European job I’m driving now… and in the shop less.

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