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An Open Letter to Computer Virus Creators

Dear Computer Virus Creator

I’m one of your countless, nameless, faceless victims.  To PC users a computer virus is about as unavoidable as death, taxes, and spam.  Even the most tech and internet savvy computer users (which I’m not) can fall prey your to dastardly deeds.  I was fooled by a very realistic-looking link when I tried to upgrade software.  Right away I knew I’d done something wrong because my computer froze up.  A manual reboot led to obvious conclusion: virus.

Right now, you’re probably chuckling to yourself like some kind of villain from a Batman movie.  I imagine you look like the garden-variety American computer geek, but you may actually be from anywhere in the world.  In that case, you may not have much sympathy for a white, college-educated American male.  Whoever you are, you’re about to get to know who I am.

The first sign something was wrong after I rebooted my computer was when Zoomtext, the magnifier program I use, didn’t open.  Visually-impaired people like me have to use a program to enlarge what’s on the screen.  I also use it to reduce glare by reversing colors on documents, so I’m looking at white letters on a black background.  Black and white.  Right and wrong.  Some of us know the difference.

It may not matter to you that one of your victims is legally blind, so it may not matter to you that I don’t drive, either.  I’m fortunate enough to live in a town with taxi cab service.  It isn’t cheap, but I’m lucky to have it.  I’m also lucky my computer guru wasn’t busy.  He even gave me a discount to clean up your mess because I’m a regular customer.  Yes, Mean-spirited Technically-gifted Loser, you’ve plagued me before.

After riding the taxi back home, I kept busy doing other things and tried not to think about lost productivity.  I’m nearing completion of my memoir, in which I talk about several health issues I’ve had to overcome in my life.  Being a single, middle-aged legally blind guy with a couple of transplanted organs isn’t easy.  I really don’t need you complicating my life further.

A kind soul gave me a ride to pick up my computer when it was fixed and also hooked it back up for me.  That saved me from having to feel the back of the PC tower to make sure I inserted the connections properly.  It would have taken me five times as long as it took him and I probably would have ended up with a headache.

Score one for Jim!

Ah, but you did a thorough job, Mr. Egotistical Socially Unskilled 40 Year-old Virgin.  The virus you made was in there so deep I had to take it back for a full strip-down of my hard drive.  My computer guru removed everything this time, including your masterpiece of computer treachery.  When I picked it up the next day, I had to reinstall software.  Luckily, someone was able to hook up my computer this time and load Zoomtext on there again.

Score TWO MORE for Jim!

The rest of us can only wonder what motivates you to wreak havoc on our lives like you do.  Are you angry at the world because in high school the cool kids shunned you due to your colossal geekiness?  Is your ego so inflated and your imagination so limited that this is the only thing you can think of to leave your mark on the world?  Do you work for an anti-virus software company desperately trying to create demand for its products?  Does creating computer viruses somehow make your penis larger?

I’d like to think this will make you feel guilty, but it won’t.  I’d love for the rest of us to sniff you out like bloodhounds, surround your sparsely-furnished little apartment, drag you out in the street in the underwear and dirty T-shirt you wear all day while sitting at your computer, and take turns pummeling you with our permanently infected laptops until you beg for mercy, cry like a little girl, and slink away to the safety of the nearest ditch or trash dumpster, but we won’t.

So, Sleazy Misguided Self-delusional Creep, I would like to close by letting your know that you were successful at causing me stress, raising  my blood pressure, delaying my progress, and costing me a small wad of cash.  But I don’t need to use my skills and education to unleash misery on the computer-using public in order to feel better about myself.  And that, in spite of my limited eyesight and tech know-how, means I win.  Until you serve up some kind of Y2K type of worldwide computer mayhem that leads rational people to hoard canned food, beef jerky, and ammo, you not only earn my disgust, by my pity as well—because you are as insignificant as a nanoparticle in the computer chip of an ameba’s tiny flash drive.

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