Being network impaired

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Why is it that each time -- each freaking time -- you are travelling abroad, those sort of things happen?

  • the IT guys have yet again changed ISP but did not communicate the new access numbers
  • your hotel is a tribute to a great Victorian past and as such, has not heard about something called the Internet (you wouldn't even bother to ask about wireless access, not before next century may be). But the hostesses are nice, and they speak French
  • the office has only one network connection for the entire meeting room, and it's of course not Mac friendly (and what's this atavism about proxy servers?)
  • entire local networks go down and suddenly the helpdesk remembers you as a handy scapegoat ("Our network's down? No, it must be your server!")
  • your mobile phone runs out of battery, and the local power plugs are a tribute to a great Victorian past
  • the unique PC at the train station lounge has some stupid antivirus that would not let you get to your webmail system, because the web script URL ends up with "/cgi-bin/webmail.exe" and that the .exe part makes it feel dizzy (never heard of a MIME type apparently)
  • your train back is probably the most expensive rail service in the whole Europe, for reasons known only to its shareholders, certainly not because it offers innovative services such as an Internet connection (surely science-fiction, isn't it?)
  • You get home at 11pm and before you get a chance to get back online, there is this breaking news running on TV that you are the last person to discover. Your mailbox is of course full of press releases that you were supposed to post today. Come on, it's not midnight yet, you can make it.

But your personal mailbox is full of interesting messages, and you rediscover that when you happen to post something slightly original, your audience comes and even dares to react. And that helps you bare the idea that you have become network-impaired.