I was typing merrily away when I saw it: a renegade period in the middle of my sentence. I backspaced to delete it but even after my cursor passed by, it remained impudently in place.
Closer examination revealed that it was actually a bit of crud stuck to my computer screen. When I cleaned it off, though, I realized exactly how much more crud there was.
It looked like tiny splatters of… something. I have no idea what. I don’t eat while I’m typing, so it can’t be food. (Although if I had a third hand I probably would eat at the same time. Maybe our children’s children’s children will evolve a convenient third appendage after generations of keyboarding.)
Anyway, I don’t have a third hand, so the crudfest isn’t food.
Even though I’ve come close to spewing a mouthful of tea over my screen when I run across something particularly funny, it’s never actually happened. So it can’t be beverage droplets.
If I’m going to cough or sneeze I contain it. The crud definitely isn’t snot. (Which is a comforting thought, because, eeuw.)
We don’t have kids and Hubby has his own laptop, so it’s not someone else’s crud.
Back in the days when cats shared our house I could have pointed the finger of blame at kitty noses, but the last of our elderly felines departed this world over ten years ago and my laptop is much newer; so that theory’s shot.
If I used voice-to-text I might suspect aerosolized spit, which, to my own embarrassment, I discovered we all emit while talking despite our best efforts. But I don’t talk while I’m working. Not even unintelligible muttering, which would theoretically reduce the spray range.
But if I’ve eliminated all the likely suspects, what is the screen crud?
I suppose it could be deliberately flung there by evil relatives of the sock imps: Computer imps that reside in the cracks between the keys.
I’m imagining something like our university dining hall a couple of eons ago, where the meal wasn’t complete until at least one person had catapulted a spoonful of Jello onto the ceiling and made it stick. By the end of the term that ceiling looked like a stained-glass window designed by a lunatic.
So maybe when I close the laptop at night, the laptop imps creep out and fling imp-Jello up at the screen.
Or it might be the invisible ghosts of long-dead copyeditors who are trying to change the punctuation in my work, only to be frustrated when I continue to type and the text scrolls down.
Maybe it’s a squadron of microscopic incontinent flying insects on organized strafing runs.
Or maybe it’s tiny spiders hanging from the ceiling, taking a dump on me as a comment on the quality of my work. (Spiders are a tough audience.)
I dunno; but if you see me hunched under an umbrella while typing away on my laptop, you’ll know why.
Anybody else have theory as to the origin of screen crud? Please tell me I’m not the only one getting dumped on by spider-critics!
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