Eeky Geeky: Weekly Peeky at the Freaky

Carl Brooks

Offered for this week only in EGWPATF: a free tutorial on how to spectacularly ruin a computer, keeping with the theme of the First Open Computer Destruction Championship, which took place in Ukraine and featured such creative means of destruction as Computer Death by Automobile, Monitor Death by Sledgehammer, and Keyboard Tossing.

All of us have harbored homicidal urges towards our silicon masters, but when it is accidental, there is really no feeling quite like the feeling of finding out that an ecological catastrophe has laid waste to the shiny metal home of all your work, your games, your files, and your carefully tweaked-out operating system. It’s a little death, a nightmare from which there is no awakening. Or something.

I, like many geeks throughout this fair land that we call “Middle Earth,” have been relegated to the basement, a dingy place hung with chains and pipes and home to odd noises and the largest collection of peripheral computer junk this side of MIT. There, in my dark, cozy lair, I spend many an hour glaring back at a monitor that glares at me, with my soul absorbed into the streaming information sea. I am a hardware geek – I constantly upgrade, swap parts in and out, reconfigure, and generally fudge around with my box. It’s not strictly accurate to call it a box – I have everything laid out on bricks, a motherboard stripped to its gleaming green and silver skin, and drives and cables strung in all directions.

With that noir-ish, Star Wars-like vision of a geek sanctuary in mind, here is the step-by-step instruction manual on how to savagely tear your machine’s working heart from its pristine electronic body.1. Park a 55-gallon fish tank directly above your desk on the floor above the basement. Make sure you have refinished the wide pine flooring and that there are gaps to the basement between the lovely, rustic old boards.2. Enjoy the fish with a vague gnawing uncertainty about the approximately 495 lbs of water 10 feet above your desk. Shrug that uncertainty off with the bravado of the Reckless Geek.3. Remove the fish.4. Remove the gravel and place it in a cracked, five gallon bucket next to the fish tank. Leave the sopping wet fish gravel alone for 8 hours.That’s it! When you return to your comfy geekhole, you will find an eco-disaster of Diluvian proportions and the lights out. Why? The work lamps are hooked into the surge protector, which, upon receiving 350 watts at 12 amps worth of short circuit, blew out like a baby buggy tire in the Baja 500.

The sinking sensation of something like this can best be described by comparing it with the sucking power of a black hole. Reality bends for parsecs around you as you contemplate the geek’s worst nightmare – an open tower case sitting in a still and eerily beautiful lake on your desk, the evanescent dewdrops of a hellrain glistening on the motherboard, clinging with insouciance to fans and cable ports, trembling in droplet laughter in the breeze of your hyperventilation.

Feel free to share these tips with your friends. Tune in next week for a return to the IP wars: learn why filesharing is not piracy and why the big media corporations suck ass.