Cutest Little Computer in Colorado (with Bonus Story)

So kc’s heading to college next month and needs a laptop.  If you remember from Mrs. P.‘s Roastapalooza wrap-up of the sensational Roastacon party, kc became enamored of Mrs. P.‘s adorable red mini laptop and felt she had to have one too.  Not wanting to discourage this idea, because they’re like $400 or so cheaper than full size laptops, I did voice the reservation that they are too small to contain a CD/DVD drive and she would need one for loading on necessary software.  A little research allayed this concern since external CD/DVD drives are available and don’t add much to the price.  Ditto with a RAM upgrade.  After sorting through the various itty bitties out there, she eventually settled on this adorable blue one (clad in its cunning decorative protective gelskin):

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To appreciate the miniscule size, here it is on top of my full size laptop:

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Yet, it has a comfortable full size keyboard:

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Best of all it is very lightweight (important for lugging it around campus) and will fit into the bootleg *Coach* purse from Canal Street.  Which reminds me.  Did I ever tell you guys about the excellent Canal Street bootleg *Coach* purse adventure that Mrs. P., kc and I had after dim sum on Sunday morning?

If you’re with me this far, then I guess not.  So Sunday morning after Roastacon a few of us got together in ChinaTown for dim sum.  When I checked the address and saw it was just off of Canal Street I figured “ah ha!” we can kill two birds with one stone.  I knew about Canal Street because on a previous NY trip we made several years ago that was organized by kc’s ballet school, a group of the moms didn’t even unpack their bags before they were heading to the subway to hit Canal Street and buy knock-off designer purses.  They lugged back their booty and reported that they were being sold out of the trunks of cars all along the street. 

So when kc and my son’s fiancee said that they wanted some good knock-off *Coach* purses from New York, well I knew just where to go!  What I didn’t know was that the situation had changed somewhat because da man had been cracking down on the hard working bootleg purse sellers forcing them underground. (key eerie music)

After a very filling and delightful dim sum brunch I announced our intent to acquire the purses and did anyone want to come along?  Mrs. P. said “yes, indeed”.  The others, being of the male persuasion, curiously were not interested.  As we had proceeded towards the restaurant we had been approached a few times by young men saying “purse?” in rather furtive tones.  “No, later” we replied.  I didn’t notice open trunks laden with purses but we were running late and in a hurry so I didn’t think anything of it.

Now I assumed we would again be offered the opportunity to buy purses so we ambled along, stopped to buy some fresh lychee nuts (yum!) and after not too long got the expected offer.  It was made by a young Asian man holding a walkie talkie.  “Yes” we responded.  “Coach purses”.  “OK.  Follow me.” was the reply.  So we did, for about a block where we met up with another young Asian man holding a walkie talkie.  He confirmed our intent and asked “only Coach?”.  Yes, we replied.  Only Coach.  More furtive speaking with the person on the other end.  Again, we were instructed to follow him, this time another block then around the corner ending up in front of a curio shop.  “I’ll call her” he said and had some more dialog into the walkie talkie.

We waited for a few minutes longer until a young Asian woman came quickly up to us.  I sensed we were getting to the business part.  The young man asked specifically who wanted to buy a purse.  kc, of course raised her hand.  Acting as a stand-in for my future DIL, I also said “yes.”  Mrs. P. shook her head “no.”  Then you have to wait here, she was told.  The young woman gave us the, by now expected, command of “follow me”.  This time we walked about half a block down and stopped in front of a parked van.  After a quick furtive look around she unlocked the back door, opened it, practically shoved us in, climbed in behind us and slammed the door.  At this point we realized the windows were completely blocked off and it was pitch dark in there.  And hotter than the blazes.  That was when I asked myself “what in the s**t have I gotten us into!”

Apparently aware we would have this reaction the young woman quickly said “don’t worry.  I’ll have the lights on in one second.”  She was true to her word.  I saw then that we were sitting on a bench just behind the front seat and the entire rest of the van was fitted out with shelves which were totally crammed with every style of *Coach* purse ever made.  Luckily kc knew exactly what she and my future DIL were looking for because if we had to sort through all those bags and make decisions I would have passed out from heat prostration.  Once the bags were chosen I asked the price.  It was exactly $4 more than I had on me.  I named a price $10 less than she had quoted.  She quickly offered to split the difference.  Done!!  And $1 left to boot.

The money changed hands, she wrapped the purses and put them in a shopping bag, took a quick peek outside through a small slit in the blackout, opened the door and we all tumbled out, then attempted to walk nonchalantly back to the breathless, waiting Mrs. P.  I couldn’t help but notice what I had not noticed before - that the streets were packed with parked vans with blacked out windows. I couldn’t help but wonder what treasures were stored within.

I don’t have a picture of Future DIL’s purse but here is kc’s:

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Nice, huh?  It’s the khaki patchwork and she gets compliments on it all the time. 

Posted by marindenver on 07/30/09 at 04:08 PM • Permalink

Categories: MessylaneousNew York City

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Mar, all that was lacking was Spalding Gray in a soiled linen suit, drinking pink gins in the expat bar with me while I waited for either your safe return or a hand-delivered ransom note.

One more detail: the DIL’s purse was perfect in every way—except for the “Coach” logo, which was upside down. All the easier for her to read it while carrying the bag, though, so that works out pretty well!

Ah, yes.  Forgot about the upside down logo.  Have not had any complaints about that, though.

And a pink gin would have been very welcome after that experience!  Next time I’ll know what to expect. ;-)

What a fantastic story. Too bad you didn’t take photos of the sign hanging over the curio shop, although that may have gotten ya shot.

Why, I have that exact same machine.  Fingerprints too.  I don’t like the bumpiness of the mousepad though, so the first thing I did was hook up a little USB laser mouse and now it scrolls very nicely.  Then I heard if you don’t take the stickers off they wear off but then it shows on the surface where they used to be.  So I took the stickers off.

But what is this “decorative protective gelskin” of which you speak.  And aren’t external drives a hundred bucks or so? Not that I can think of what you’d want one for….’

The external drive was about $75.  She needs to put MS Office on her computer for school work and that was the only way to do it plus then you can watch DVDs on it, burn CD’s from itunes, etc.  Just gave it more versatility and still a lot cheaper than the full size.  The decorative gelskin is from a company called Gelaskins, Inc. and they make self sticking gel covers for just about any electronic device in all different sizes, colors and designs.

Thanks, I love the designs, and I hate what security does to my laptops when I go through an airport (getting your brand new laptop back all scratched up).

My Eee came with a free trial of the 2007 version of Office, which I hate. On one laptop I had, the 2007 version reverts to the 2003 version if you don’t get it after the trial period ends—which is the version I prefer anyhow.

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