Tuesday, September 29, 2015


I do like my movies. I saw the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey when I was a kid. I didn't really understand much of it, but I thought it was pretty cool, which is surprising because I generally don't get into much science fiction (or didn't at that age). I later learned a bit more about HAL, the computer that developed a mind of its own. All of that aside, when the first large color apple computers came out, I was a secretary in the Dean's Office in the College of Education at the U of I, working for two very interesting, friendly, and funny associate deans. I became a self-taught Mac "expert" at the college and was called upon by many people to problem-shoot their computer issues as well as help them put fun things on their computers. One such popular thing at the time was kind of like ringtones are now on our cell phones—using various customized alerts to entertain us. On the Macs, it was setting sounds for various computer functions. As a joke, I put the phrase on today's piece on Ted's (one of the associate deans) computer so that anytime he did something that would cause the computer to "beep" at him, instead it would say, "I'm sorry Dave. I'm afraid I can't do that." We got the biggest kick out of that, and I will never forget it! Ted wasn't sure what to think of me sometimes, but I know he liked me, and he would laugh every time he heard his computer talk to him in this way; I could hear him from where my desk was. So that is the long story to explain the impetus for choosing this particular phrase today!

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