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So there I am, 9 pm, end of a long day writing copy for a ‘bid book’ for a client trying to secure a major sporting event, and I’m just about to attach my word doc to my email when in comes my sassy eleven year-old, waving her arms around – and suddenly I’m looking at my recently opened bottle of wine lying sideways over my laptop gushing arterially over my keyboard.

“Kitchen Towel!” I shout at her.

She moves to the kitchen top with about as much urgency as a yawn. I dab furiously and turn the laptop upside down. Red wine drips onto the table. I mop and dab until the next wad of paper towel is dry.

It escapes my daughter to say sorry and she leaves the room feeling only the rude interruption of my outburst.

To my surprise my laptop hasn’t shorted or even stopped working. I tell myself I’ve been lucky. My daughter returns to tell me I was a bit stupid to put my wine so close to my computer. Very female – the man’s fault every time; she should be allowed to flap her arms about with gay abandon whenever she feels like it. What on earth will she be like at 18? I wonder.

Thirty minutes later I switched off my computer. Only to realize I’d forgotten to attach that piece of work. So I switched the computer back on… and to my horror, it refused my password. In fact the keyboard didn’t work, period. Not so lucky then, after all.

The next day the laptop was still suffering from alcoholic poisoning. It came on, but refused my password. I was looking at possibly having to replace the keyword, maybe worse. All major items like scripts and novels were twice backed up, but I realized a whole load of stuff was not. Not vital stuff, but the kind of stuff I’d now have to rummage around for on memory sticks and old emails to recover. I’d have to re-write a day’s worth of copy. Great timing – just as we were expecting my sister in law and her two girls. I realized 10 pages of my latest script were also not backed up. This was really not good. I was beginning to feel down and even slightly stressed by the whole cock-up. And as I set out the next morning taking my nine year old boy down to Wimbledon for a short film he was acting in, I struggled to muster much enthusiasm for chat – which was especially regrettable as he was so loving it, the trip with his dad.

Back home I searched the net, using my Dell, for remedies, advice, for ‘wine spill on laptop’. Don’t use a hairdryer, one post warned. Shit – I had, albeit very briefly. I read on: …Rinse the insides with distilled water… I didn’t have any distilled water. I’d have to go to a garage. But even then, I didn’t fancy my chances of improving matters with DIY. I had a very reasonable dread of getting the pieces back together again after I was done.

Finally I called Micro Anvika and asked for their advice. Guy with an Indian accent tells me to leave it unplugged, with battery out, upside down like a tent, so air could get to it, then take it into the repair shop if it’s still sick after 48 hours. If I had to get it repaired, the repair would not be covered by the guarantee as I was to blame, I was gently informed.

A trip to the repair shop Monday morning means I may have to work very late that day to make up for lost time.  All in all this has turned out to be possibly the most expensive drink I’ve had in a long time.

Will I stop drinking when I’m working on my laptop in the evenings? Of course not, I’ll just put up some barbed wire round my bottle of wine and laptop when my kids are around.

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