If It Isn’t One Thing, It’s Another

So I bought a new video card this month and even though it started out bad, I found a solution to keep it turned on and working right.  As long as I didn’t turn the computer off completely but instead put it to sleep when I’m not using it then all would be ok.

We got a notice on the door from PG&E on Wednesday that our electricity would be shut off Friday for an unspecified amount of time.  Well, I knew that this would cause my computer to turn off all the way.  When I got my computer to work before it didn’t take more than a few minutes for it to turn on so I never thought in a million years that it would be a huge issue for my computer to be without power even for a few hours.

Our power got shut off as I was expecting but when it finally came back on, my computer didn’t want to turn back on.  It eventually did come on but it said something about the CMOS.  I was given 2 choices.  F1 to enter the setup or F2 to choose optimal settings.  I chose F1 and in there I chose optimal settings and it turned on and went into Windows just fine.  It all got frozen so I rebooted.  I didn’t have any rebooting issues before so I didn’t think anything of it.

When it turned back on I got another blank screen.  Nothing was happening and I was back at square 1.  Dammit!  Why did I have to reboot?  Well, I’m glad I did because it told me that I wasn’t finished, also, I shouldn’t live in fear of turning my computer off.  That’s certainly no way to live.  So I opened the side panel and clear the CMOS (pulling the jumper from 1-2, putting it on 2-3 waiting 5 seconds then putting it back on 1-2).

Turned the computer back on and nothing.  Eventually it did show me the same issue and I chose F2 and for some reason it did start to load but then it rebooted.  I got the screen you see when you first turn the computer on but then the monitor went dead again and it never turned on again.

I’ve opened the case, reseated everything.  Pulled all the power supply plugs then put them all back in their place and turned it on and still nothing.  The only light that turns on is the green light.  At one point the red light would flash 3 times in a row then pause then 3 times over and over.  Then another point it would flash 2 then pause then 1 then pause then 2 then 1 etc.  Then no lights flashing at all.  I don’t understand.

I opened it up again and with my bicycle light I inspected everything and I did find this little issue which would explain why I wasn’t hearing any beeping sounds.

The red wire on my speaker wasn’t connected.  I tried soldering it back on but it still doesn’t beep.  Although, I’m not exactly sure I did it right.  They are inexpensive and I tried to buy another one at the computer store and they looked at me like I was an alien from outer space when I asked for it.  I went to Radio Shack next door and the guy I asked said they didn’t sell those.

I was looking at the video card box and it shows the system requirements on the side of the box.  One of those requirements is power supply and it shows a link to the list of power supplies that are compatible and my new power supply isn’t anywhere on that list.  Probably because it was the cheapest power supply they sold.

The reason I bought a cheap power supply is because I didn’t even think that it would affect any of the hardware.  I always thought that as long as it gave power to the computer that it didn’t matter how cheap it was.  How wrong was I!  So, now I have to buy a new power supply and it could cost me as much as $100-$250.  I am too poor to spend $250 just for a power supply so I have to go through the list on the Best Buy website to get prices so I know I’m getting a good power supply but in the $100 range.

I looked at websites like NewEgg.com and TigerDirect.com and they did have a couple that were on the list but what if I did order one and I had to wait a week for it to come and it still didn’t work?  I’d have to send it back, buy another one, wait another week.  Forget it!

I was looking at the Best Buy website last night and I narrowed down my search to the $50-$99 price range then looked at all of the power supplies they sell and compared them to the list and the least expensive one on the list is the Cooler Master GX 650 for $99.  It’s a bit expensive but considering I wouldn’t have to wait for it to come to me in the mail I’m willing to pay for the convenience of getting my computer working immediately.

It took a week for my video card to arrive and even though it wasn’t too late to send it back, once I got it working and cut the proof of purchase off the box to send the rebate in, it was too late to send it back.  I would much rather buy something in a store so I can return it for a new one of it doesn’t work right.  I should have done that with my video card, then again I still have a crappy power supply so now I know why my video card doesn’t work.

Unfortunately I won’t be able to do this until next week when I get my next check because I am so broke right now.  But I really don’t need to have my computer right away so it can wait.  As long as I have my Chromebook I’m fine.  I can spend my week reading books like I did before I got my new video card.  It’s not a huge crisis but still, I want my computer to work.


Looking For My Dad

I have posted this in the main section of my website under the title Missing Father but I’ve been getting visits to my websites thanks to the robots or spiders or whatever from Google using key words in my blog entries.  So now I would like to copy and paste that entire page into this blog post in hopes that someone who is connected will get an email from Google saying that I made a blog with my paternal fathers name.


My mother Bonnie McDonald (her name in 1969) was in a relationship with Ron Shirtliff some time in 1969 and I was conceived around October – November 1969.  I was born premature on June 2nd 1970 so I’m guessing sometime late October or any time in November 1969 was when they still had their relationship.  Something happened and he ended it and left and she failed to tell him that she was pregnant because she didn’t want to make him feel trapped (this is my assumption) but she kept in contact with his mother until I was about 3 or 4 years of age.  When I turned 15 in 1985 she told me about him but her story wasn’t the right  story.  She didn’t want me to think badly of her because of the truth of the relationship which was he was married.

In the early 90’s I asked her for his name and she refused to tell me and she asked me not to look for him for her own personal reasons but I also found those reasons to be untrue and I know the reason but I wont reveal them here.  She took his name with her to the grave and any information about his or his mothers whereabouts.

In the mid 90’s I tried looking for him but with just a picture there was not much I could do.  I didn’t have his name or social security number and even Unsolved Mysteries wouldn’t air the photo of him.  Not knowing anything about him I gave up the search.  Some time around 2002 I got in touch with my Aunt Betty and she revealed to me the whole truth about the relationship and even gave me a name.  I am one step closer but I am still at square 1.  Without a social security number I have nothing.  I have recently restored the one and only picture I have of my real father and grandmother and colorized it.  It makes me feel good to have this restored and in color.  It has also gotten me to start my search again.  I have been scouring the search engines and military websites to try to find some trace of him.  Eventually I’m going to have to cough up the money to one of those agencies online because I have found his name through them but they wont give me any information unless I pay them for it and even then I wont know for sure that that is him.  I wish I could say that money is no object but unfortunately I can’t.  I’m poor.

Here is a picture of my birth father and grandmother.  If anyone out there can help me it is much appreciated.  You can contact me by emailing me at hwoodcats @ gmail dot com.  There are many different variations of the last name that I have seen on search engines.  There are Shirtliff, Shurtliff, Shirtleff and Shurtleff.  As far as I know my grandmother lived in Reseda, CA in the 60’s and 70’s and possibly 80’s across the street from Reseda High School or in that neighborhood.  I don’t know her name though.


That is the pasted story from my website and as you can see there are several spellings of his last name.  If someone does see this blog and you are him or a son, brother, cousin… whatever, I am not looking for him because I want something in return.  I just want to fill a void in my life.  I want to know who my real father is, where I come from.  I don’t care about the circumstances of the relationship of him and my mother and I would hope that after 39 years there wouldn’t be any thought about any of that.  I just want to know who my daddy is.  And, if I have a brother or a sister or any cousins I want to meet them.

If for some reason my real father doesn’t want to meet me I am ok with that.  But please, someone let me know so I can stop looking.  I don’t want to be left in the dark.  I just want the pain to go away in my heart.  If it can’t be filled then I will go on with my life knowing that I tried and that I wasn’t able to find him because he didn’t want to find me.  But please, don’t leave me hanging.  Just reply in this blog post saying so and I will delete all message board posts and I will delete this blog post and the page on my website.  I just hope that is not the case though.

Here is the colorized picture that I restored from the black and white and folded picture as well as a picture of my grandmother that my aunt let me have.

my grandmother