The Photocopier Continues To Haunt (Taunt?) Me

Seriously. I thought that when I left my school that all of my photocopying and printing woes would be behind me. Alas, I was wrong. As I usually am in these cases. I have told my tales of copying woe before (here and here to be exact) and can’t believe that I have another one to share with you today.

I mean, isn’t it enough that for seven years SEVEN YEARS the photocopier was capable of sending me into a rage I still can’t quite put into words? What IS it about the photocopier? It got so bad at one point that Grandpa Mimi offered to BUY ME a photocopier. BUY ME A PHOTOCOPIER! I knew it must be really bad because my family is certainly not one to throw money at a problem (more like half a coat of deck stain…it’ll fix anything) and photocopiers don’t just grow on trees, ya know. (They eat trees.) (Hundreds of them.) (Shhh.) (I think they’re watching me…)

How bad could it have gotten you ask? I mean, I’m only imagining that evil photocopiers and printers have now followed me out of the workplace, so yeah, it was THAT BAD. I’m talking you fill out the stupid little form requesting a copy, put it on the pile and then somehow the book disappears (Bye, bye original!), no one has any idea where it could be and oh yeah, those other copies you asked for are totally going to take longer than they thought. Or, how about you recieve 25 homework packets in a timely fashion, yet the top page (you know, the one with all the assignments and stuff) was photocopied at a wierd angle so now 35% of it is cut off but heck yeah that mistake was reproduced 25 times. Oh, and the third page? That’s missing. And the whole thing was collated on the right hand side – not a tragedy – but enough to make you think that you may be on candid camera because it definitely feels like someone is fucking with you. This can’t be real. It can’t be this hard.

So THEN (because there’s more) you walk your little self and your big stack of copies-to-be-made to the far distant corner of the school (read: universe) where the photocopier you ARE allowed to touch (read: the photocopier from 1974) is located. You lovingly call this part of the school Siberia. It’s that far. You are ready to make this look easy. You have your originals, your list (always need a list) and your stack of paper. You insert the first copy to be made and paper jam. PAPER FREAKING JAM! Fantasizing about that scene from Office Space where Neil Diamond or whatever his name is, goes apeshit on a photocopier with a baseball bat in a field, you go back to your classroom and put your head down. Just for a moment. To rest your eyes.

Do I paint an accurate picture friends?

Call me crazy, but as I sobbed my way out of the building on my last day (It was so hard to say good bye to my little friends), I comforted myself with the thought that I would never again have to deal with ridiculous photo copiers or a lack of toner. (Don’t even get me started on toner. This post is long enough…just click here.

And then today happened. I went to Staples to print out a very long, very crucial piece of my dissertation. 251 pages of blood, sweat and tears (mostly tears) to be exact. (And no, I’m not finished yet.) I mean, that’s just too much to print at home, right? I’m standing at the counter, dreaming about waiting for my order whilst drooling in the Sharpie aisle when I realize…I have been standing here for twenty freaking minutes. (I am trying to curse less…not sure why, just seems like a good goal.) Um, Staples, hast thou forgotten my devotion to thee? Me thinks you have.

In a huff, I take my thumb drive and I’m off to Kinkos. For I am a woman of surprises, a woman of mystery! I get myself to the counter where I am told it is $0.49 a page. Which would mean that copying my document would cost roughly $125. Plus tax.

Back to Staples I went.
Where I waited.
Got some help.
Waited some more.
And was so frustrated that I couldn’t even look at the Sharpies.

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  • Michael Bolton.

    September 26, 2009 at 2:31 am
  • The photocopier at work only works for me. Seriously. It waits until I show up, and then it works. If I do not pat it every morning, then nobody gets any copies for the day. The down side of this? People follow me around, asking if I'm headed to the copy room.

    September 26, 2009 at 12:33 pm
  • copiers. they're the technology we should have studied in college. computers? heck with them.

    September 27, 2009 at 9:29 pm
  • Hail Marys – I say one every time I have something vital to copy. Or an transparency.

    Also, I do have my own copier/scanner/printer for emergencies. I got it on sale during WalMart's Black Friday sale. Sure, we were up at 4 am to grab one… but if you're not after a TV or video game it's not that bad. Just sayin'… Thanksgiving is just a couple of months away. Still time to get in shape for the running.

    September 27, 2009 at 9:29 pm
  • I teach in a small school and we are allowed to make our own copies. Sounds great – right? My room is across from the copy room -a tiny little room stacked high with shelves of boxes, the roll cart with the overhead projector, a lecturn I've never seen anyone use, a utility sink, large garbage pail, a few packs of paper and . . . the toilet paper supply for the school. Anyhow, I digress. The room has no windows so no ventilation. Therefore the copier overheats and creates one paper jam after another. Guess who fixes the copier? You guessed it – somehow I'm one of the few who can unjam that baby and make it behave. So in the middle of my teaching – a frustrated face will appear in my doorway and most times I take pity on that person and stop what I'm doing. Also if you don't purchase your own paper and keep it in your room as a spare, I guarantee that just when you want to run off your math test that's when we'll run out of paper. Frustrating!

    September 27, 2009 at 9:29 pm
  • Funny that I read this after having to come up with new lessons this morning. Why? Oh, my copies haven't been made yet. I'm one of those that have to turn in a request for my copies. I love the lady who make mine this year though – she rocks! Usually my stuff if back super fast. Only when the admin people decide something is more important and she must run it now that I have to wait.

    September 28, 2009 at 7:37 pm
  • #1 – I love your blog! I'm working towards becoming a teacher and your stories are great : )

    #2 – did you try submitting your order to staples online? and then you can have them call you when it's done! (you can do this for fedex office aka kinkos too!)

    October 2, 2009 at 2:47 pm
  • At my school, I am the photocopier whisperer. The copier jams, runs low on toner, eats the third page of your homework packet? Here I come to the rescue!! Every morning I sing to it and give it lots of positive reinforcment. I am thinking of putting it on a behavior plan so it will behave for others as well.

    October 5, 2009 at 2:05 pm

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