In the work I do away from this column, I work very closely with computers. I’m that bespectacled guy with heavy eyebrows who sits so close to the PC, you’d think it’s whispering something to him. Through this close relationship, I’ve learnt a thing or two about this electronic beast. We get along quite well, when I’m not being passive aggressive at it for taking too long to open a document. I usually ask it, “If you aren’t faithful doing something as simple as quickly opening a Word document, how can I trust you with checking my bank balance online?” It never gets round to answering. It’s this bond though that drew me to a story last week that said that one of the computers at the Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA) had been kidnapped, or ‘stolen’ as the newspaper put it. I could feel my keyboard quiver as my PC monitor flickered, displaying the story of its colleague’s unfortunate demise. Computers everywhere deserve justice! The perpetrators of this unjust act must be brought to book, I told my now sobbing PC. I gave it a moment then got to work to unearth some of the possible places the ‘stolen’ computer might be. Because my skilling is in writing and not chasing and tackling computer thieves, I’ll share non-anonymous tipoffs with the police here.
It received a Facebook message saying “Hi my dear. I like your profile pic. I have a thing to share with you,” and it fell in love with the sender. It’s on its way to Nigeria to meet them
It was tired of autocorrecting typos. No amount of training had prepared it for all those typos. It’s on leave in Ssese
It’d heard of this thing called Twitter and it wanted to visit it. It’s trying to get a visa
It didn’t see its career prospects improving at UNRA. Whenever the computers of one of the bosses crashed, it was always passed over for the promotion. A shiny new computer was always wheeled in. Enough was enough. It’s in the village trying its hand at agriculture
It wanted to see the world. Answering Google searches for correct bitumen levels in a road and local music wasn’t quite what it’s dreamed of doing with its life. It’s on a retreat doing some hard-drive searching
Those people in IT hadn’t cleaned it in a while. It needed a decent shower. It’s somewhere waiting on rain
IT needed to try its RAM at sports betting. It’s in Kabalagala, making bets with everything in it