How a Visit to an Apple Genius Bar Led to Better Eating Habits

A few months ago my beloved MacBook Air, circa 2012, started acting up. It finally got to the point where I couldn’t use it for more than about 30 minutes before it would conk out. When I tried to reboot it, the screen was a very ominous-looking gray background with an icon of a folder with a question mark. A quick search revealed that this may not be a good thing.

So for the first time in several years, I used my school-issued Windows laptop to teach my classes this past Spring and early Summer. It was fine; it got the job done, but I really missed my MacBook.

But once I was finished teaching my Summer classes, I made an appointment to go to the Genius Bar at the local Apple store. I wasn’t optimistic going in, so I prepared myself for any bad news they might tell me.

The first person I spoke with let me know that since the laptop was so old (nine years is old??), that if it needed work, they would not be able to service it at their store because they do not keep the parts in stock.

They first ran some diagnostics on it, and no particular problem was discovered; the hard drive seemed fine as did the battery.

Then another technician came by and said there was the possibility that there was a loose screw inside the laptop that could be causing the problem, so he said he would check it out in the back.

A few minutes later he came back and said that he wasn’t sure if this was the problem, but the inside of the laptop was completely filled with dust and dirt. He said he gave it a thorough cleaning and told me to see if it made a difference.

The cost for all that help? $0.00.

It’s been a week now, and I’ve been using my MacBook every day, and it’s worked like a charm.

I am quite grateful to the geniuses at the Apple store.

Now I just have to make sure that I keep it cleaner, and stop eating chips and other snacks while using it.

Who knew that a little bit of dirt could have had such an impact on the operation of a laptop, and that getting it cleaned would lead to a healthier diet…


118 thoughts on “How a Visit to an Apple Genius Bar Led to Better Eating Habits

  1. Nice of them not to charge you, but you could have at least given them a bag of chips. And if food hurts computers, why are they made by Apple? But I’m just glad you didn’t try my method for repairing defective laptops. I hurl them to the floor and then stomp on them, while screaming and yelling. So far, this has never worked.

    Liked by 7 people

      1. It was usually my bedroom or living room wall.

        Waaaay back in 1981, in my first computer lab at college, I was working on homework in the middle of the night when another student yelled, spit on his pc, and walked out. I fully understood!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. you were a trailblazer; I think that was the year PCs first came out! andin many ways they are just as frustrating now as they were 30 years ago…


      3. We used 11″ floppies!!
        My dad was a mainframe eng for IBM. I keypunched as a kid. That university class was Basic. Not Visual Basic but plain Basic. I distinctly remember the night my dad said, “someone made an app to make a pc work like a gawd damn mac!” That was windows.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. I keep one of those 11″ floppies in my office, as well as the progressively smaller ones, to show my students.

        I grew up around big computers as well, since my dad was a computer operator for a large publishing company.

        And I remember keypunch machines, although I never had to use one, but I do remember taking a course in basic in the late 1970s, and I loved it…

        I remember my dad complaining about having to take a “user” focus…


      5. Lol. I didn’t think to save a history of floppies. I’m glad you did! Hardly anyone knows about the 11″ ones!

        I was prob 6yrs old when my dad started taking me to weekend calls and letting me keypunch for fun. I remember having a template of a heart shape and knowing how to input that to create hundreds of copies. I also had a bunch of “printer art”, where people programmed mainframes to print pictures via alpha characters. I wish I still had them!

        Liked by 1 person

      6. He must have said “program”… no one used “app” back then!

        Our first IBM PC AT, with employee discount, cost over $3,000…in the late 70s! And it couldn’t do a damn thing. I was furious because what we really needed was an electric memory typewriter.

        Speaking of which, last night I saw keyboards that look like old typewriters. Freakin $200+!!

        Liked by 1 person

      7. true about the app!

        our first PC was an AT&T, with a color monitor. it came with two floppy drives and a whopping 20 meg hard drive, which I thought would be more than I would ever need…


      8. LOL!!
        Our monitor was the generic black with green text. I’m guessing it was 8k.
        I can recall searching terms in the 90s and amazing everyone with the term Terabyte… that much memory was unfathomable!!

        Liked by 1 person

      9. I remember going to buy my friend a replacement keyboard and thinking the $17.99 stickers were wrong because I was used to them costing over $100!

        “They” point out that our phones now have substantially more memory than the first lunar craft.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Maybe a healthy snack may have been better, but blogging and healthy snacks don’t go together.

      and maybe next time you have a defective computer, just try the screaming and yelling. It works well with people…

      Liked by 2 people

    2. Maybe the problem is that their is a screw loose, like they first told Jim. But in your situation the loose screw wouldn’t have to do with your computer. 😝

      Liked by 2 people

      1. My unicorn had nothing to do with your incompetence. Your unwillingness to take responsibility for your errors, combined with your incompetence, leaves me to conclude that you would leave the lid loose on your caramel latte, then spill it all over Jim’s laptop, and then blame a unicorn.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Thank you, my siblings were impressed about it as I was. LOL!πŸ˜„
        But actually if I ever do get a cavity I will probably be the biggest baby for I have no idea what a shot of novacaine feels like!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m sure nine years is way more than the average user. Now you got the MacBook Air off of death row, what will you do for an encore? Maybe it’s time to break out the old clown act.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Thanks for the post. I wonder if that’s the cause of my 9yr old notebook pc having issues. Unlike you, I can’t find anyone to look at it for less than $75. I’m gonna take it to the office and open it myself (doing so at home guarantees a ton of cat fur being added to the interior).

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Great customer service sells your product better than any feature or function ever can. I would be too sacred of breaking something to open it and clean it myself. Did you tell them your Mac is a vegan?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. the genius bar, to me, is one of Apple’s key selling points. And there was no way I would try to open my MacBook. They could probably figure out my snacking habits once they had a look inside πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  5. My MacBook is 12 years old and it works great except when I try to use WordPress. It is my fourth Mac and I have loved them all. And I always got great service when needed, which was rare. These days I still write my blog on my MacBook, which I connect to a nice large monitor and full keyboard then email it to my IPad to paste into WordPress. This process is working for now although it is sometimes challenging when I want to include several photos. Glad to hear that your’s just needed a free cleaning and some TLC. Hopefully it will still have some good years left, especially if you avoid those snacks.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. that’s good to knwo that your Macbook is still going strong after 12 years. That sounds like a quite a process to post something to WP, I wonder why you can’t do it directly from your MacBook.

      I plan to be more mindful about my snacking habits… πŸ™‚


      1. The OS and browser on my MacBook are too old for WordPress and can no longer be updated. Built in obsolescence. It worked fine when I first started blogging but WP is constantly changing. Because of theses changes, it no longer likes my system and my local Apple guy will happily sell me a new one. I am just putting it off because I have irreplaceable graphic programs on my current one. Although I purchased them outright in the past when I was self employed, these programs are now only available through very expensive monthly subscriptions for new operating systems. A great business model if you are the seller, not so great if you are an individual user. I will bite the bullet eventually.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. that’s unfortunate that your computer does not support these newer versions of software; I’m not a fan of such planned obsolesence. Glad you were able to find a workaround…

        Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree it’s much easier to stick with an existing computer if possible. and the genius bar is a big selling point for me with Apple products…


  6. amazing and at a an affordable price! oh no, my flamin’ hot Cheetos – I’ll bet mine is filled with them! I usually take mine to a local place ‘apples and oranges’ run by two young guys who say their job is to repair apple products, apple’s job is to sell you a new one. I get it and appreciate them, use them whenever it is possible. plus they are non-judgmental as far as no stupid question, etc. but who knows as soon as one walks out the door?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I wish we had a place like Apples and Oranges, great name and a great idea.

      There’s a chancet hey talk about how many flamin’ hot Cheetos you must eat, but I’m guessing their diet isn’t the best either πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

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