Apple Battery Recall

Img_0574Apple has recalled my laptop battery. According to the recall notice, I’m supposed to stop using the battery immediately, removing it from the laptop, or the laptop might overheat. That’s all the notice says, but I mentally extend the sentence, with “causing it to burst into flames, melting the laptop into a pool of metal and plastic and burning down my entire house, including all the baby and toddler keepsakes and photos, and leaving my family homeless.” 
    Anyway, I’m then supposed to wait, computer plugged in, four to six weeks until my new battery arrives.
    I’m paranoid about fire. All my nightmares of a kid were of “firebugs” (not sure where I heard about them) burning my house down. I come by this genetically—my grandmother eventually got past her need to leave buckets of water all around the house, but as long as she could walk continued to unplug every electrical cord at night, woe the person who woke up in the middle of the night and wanted to turn on a light. Good thing her era predated digital clock displays, or my mother would have spent her entire mornings resetting clocks.
    So of course I yanked out the battery. And then I put it back in, because the thought of being tethered to a power outlet after years of laptop use made me feel claustrophobic. Yeah, I spend a fair number of hours a day sitting at my desk with the computer plugged in; I work in a home office and telecommute. But I can’t write first drafts in an office; I never could, not even in the days of typewriters. I can just find too many things to distract myself. "Oh look, a phone, I need to call that person whose call I was supposed to return three weeks ago. And those six months of magazines piled in the corner, I’d better read them right now! And clearly it’s time to reorganize my file cabinets."
    Back in high school I had a teeny tiny light blue portable typewriter I could take anywhere, even to summer camp. It was not much bigger than my current laptop. (Come to think of it, it didn’t need to be plugged in either, which was a good thing because the cabins at camp did not have electrical outlets.) And I had one of the first Apple laptops ever made. I’m a café writer, and proud of it.
    Even when I’m not writing a first draft I can’t sit at my desk all day; a neck injury last year limits my vertical time, I have to take the occasional half hour break reclining on the couch, laptop on my knees. It’s the best position for catching up on on-line news—try it! I suppose I could get an extension cord and stay wired, but likely I would trip over it and injure yet another part of my body.
    So my laptop battery stays in, except sometimes I remember to take it out at night, or at least unplug the thing. And while I know a bucket of water would be really dumb to throw on an electrical fire, I’m fighting the urge to put one in the corner of my office….

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