The Printer Had Reached It’s Time

By Richard Wheeler (Zephyris) 2007. Microchips...
By Richard Wheeler (Zephyris) 2007. Microchips from Epson ink cartriges. These are small printed circuit boards, the black dome contains the chip itself. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Finally got rid of the million dollar printer. I bought it about ten years ago when wide-format printers were really expensive and there was only one available. I didn’t know ten years ago that a printer like that would not only go down in price but there would be a lot more to choose from, all with better features.

When one ink cartridge would run out of ink the printer wouldn’t print. So if the magenta cartridge was empty, I couldn’t print a thing, not even with black ink. And the cartridges were tiny. The amount of ink inside them had to be minuscule. So I was forever running to Office Depot for more ink cartridges. And while there would inevitably decide that “while I’m there I should stock up on the ink cartridges.” The bill would top $100. For ink.

Today I was going to a birthday party for a friend who just turned 80. She was a neighbor in the old “hood”. A few childhood friends would be there. I scrambled through some old photo albums and came up with a great print that I knew one of my friends would love to have. It was a picture of my family standing next to her grandfather, in Pennsylvania, in 1970. We were neighbors here in Texas. So the photo is a little unusual. I scanned it. Printed it. Ink smears all over the paper. Globs of ink smears. So I cleaned the cartridge heads, and ran a cartridge check, etc. Everything looked good. I printed again. White lines through the faces. This time the printer sends me a message that there are parts that need to be services inside the machine. That’s nice, I thought, and proceeded to go through the head-cleaning process again. This time all the lights were blinking and it was frozen. Nothing.

That was it. I will not spend another dime on this printer. However, it was full of cartridges (there are nine) that if I return them to Office Depot, they will credit my account two dollars a piece. The machine was frozen. I couldn’t get to the cartridges. So I tossed it off the balcony.

No really. I did.

The neighbor took pictures.

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