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Gratuitous pic of a puppy (Fergus)

Gratuitous pic of a puppy (Fergus)

I’m old enough to remember when the family telephone didn’t even have a rotary dial on it, we were on a party line and had to wait our turn to tell an operator (who knew everyone personally) what number, person or business to connect us to.

Now my life, like everyone else’s is dependent on technology and devices that do a lot of the thinking for us. Or direct us in what actions we need to take. Like the dinging dishwasher that nags when it’s completed its run, or the washer/dryer that plays me a little song.

A bit over a year ago, I bought myself a Fitbit Flex as I was getting serious about my health and the extra 10 to 15 pounds that I was carrying around. I diligently got in my step goal most days, logged all my other physical activities and everything I ate and drank.

By the way, that worked better than I expected…I lost 12 pounds in less than four months by just making myself accountable to the Fitbit.

I wear the thing 24 hours a day, except in the water although they say you can, and begrudge the hours I have to take it off to recharge the battery. I’m hooked on the little buzzing vibration when I hit my step goal for the day. Pavlovian? Oh, definitely.

With Fergus, getting in my step goal has gotten very much easier. We do walkies 20 times a day and, when he’s not snoring on my lap,

Too bad there’s no audio so you can hear his little buzzsaw…

we’re chasing each other around the house playing keep away with Lambchop or the puppy’s shoe – or one of mine.

So last week when I didn’t get my buzz on even though I knew I’d more than exceeded my daily step goal, I got suspicious. The next morning I tried to sync the Fitbit to the apps on my computer and mobile devices – no dice. I checked the battery level. It was half charged. I upgraded the apps and the Flex. Still nothing.

So I contacted Fitbit Support*, live chat because I hate talking to Support on a phone when I have to be constantly doing crap to the device or equipment to troubleshoot. About an hour later, we’d sorted out a workaround to get it to sync occasionally, but it wasn’t tracking my activities. So, no buzz that day either. I also noticed that I had to restart the Flex every time I wanted to sync it and then it had precious little to report.

After an hour on the phone with Fitbit Support the next day, restarting, reinstalling software, re-pairing the Flex to my computer and devices – it still wasn’t tracking or syncing. It couldn’t even be found by the computer unless it was plugged into the charger. Lotta good it’s doing me there.

I kept hoping Fitbit would just say, “Hey, it’s dead. Let us send you a new one.”

HappyBut, no.

So, end of long story, I just left the damned thing in the charger for a day and voilà it works better than ever and even the apps on my computer and mobile devices are singing and dancing like never before. The hell???

Over the weekend, I went with friends to a fabulous musical performance by the Irish ensemble Danú,

(I’ll just leave this here…)

We clapped ‘til our hands ached and I finally got that gratifying little buzz I’d been missing for days. Cheating, one might say as I wasn’t earning it by walking or running. I say,

Fitbit, you so owe me.

What technologies or devices make your life worth living or make you crazy?

*By the way, Fitbit Support is exceptional. Really competent, patient people and good record keeping.

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