Episode 28: Man’s Inhumanity to Man: The Printer

episode 28

Welcome to your friendly neighborhood jman’s almost internet famous internet show.  I am your friendly neighborhood jman.

I am also the head and lone employee of the Information Technologies department here at the jman household.  And, believe you me, I am not a fan of the position, either.  Parenting is a thankless job.  But, being a parent on top of the being the family’s IT department?  That’s not just a thankless job.  That’s a complete black hole of thanklessness.

Besides setting up and maintaining an eclectic assortment of computers, laptops, tablets and phones

Oh my!

I also have to maintain the family’s printer, as well as part of said duties


This is our printer.  I hate this printer.

I hate this printer.  I know that “hate” is a strong word.  And it’s not a nice word, either.  But “despise with every living fiber of my being” is a bit wordy.  So, I’ll stick with “hate”.

I know.  I know.  I know what you’re thinking.  You’re thinking:  What’s the matter with you my friendly neighborhood jman?  It looks like an average, ordinary printer.  What could be so bad about it?

If that is what you’re thinking, then let me say nuts to you.  Cause, that’s what the printer wants you to think.  This printer is a sociopath.  It’s all nice to your friends, your family but as soon as they’re not looking?  Wham!  You (point) are totally getting mindfucked.

That is this very printer you see before you.

For instance, it is constantly…CONSTANTLY…running out of ink.  It’s one of these “fancy” printers that holds 4 different colors of ink.  Black, Blue, Yellow and Fallujah

I think.

I don’t know why we have four separate ink carts in our printers these days.  I guess its supposeto be more cost effective?  Who knows.  How cost effective can anything of this size be?

Seriously.  How much ink can these things possibly hold?

Because it annoys the living shit out of me, I’m gonna repeat my question?  How much ink could these 1.5 inch by half inch plastic things hold?!?!

Any why, pray tell, does it even have a chip on it?  I can’t get a chip on my flippin credit card, but they’re putting chips willy nilly on printer cartridges??!?  So the printer can communicate with the carts?!?  Why do printers need to talk to the cartridges all the sudden?

Must be because of that whole cost effective thing again.


But the real fun part of having this printer?  Installing said ink cartridges.  If you’re looking for a mood killer, then you should try installing the ink carts into this printer.

episode 28

It sounds kinda stupid, right?  All’s you gotta do is flip the lid, take the safety seal of the cartridge, snap in into the cartridge cradle, close the lid and print to your heart’s content.  Amiright?

You couldn’t be more wronger.


Yes.  That is the core of the process.  But, it’s just the beginning of this fucked up trip down the rabbithole.

Loading the ink into the carriage is the easy part.  The fun really begins after you close the lid.  There’s no printing to your heart’s content, just yet.  First, you have to make sure that the print heads are aligned.  Cause god forbid you load the ink and just start printing.  That, my friends, would be far too easy.

Aligning the print heads, by the way, uses ink.  And if by chance the print heads aren’t aligned properly and you know they’re gonna be

Then you might have to do a nozzle check.  And if then the print heads still aren’t aligned?

Which they hardly ever are…

Then it’s time for the drastic, ink burning. head cleaning.

By the way, none of this goes quickly, either.  Each one of these “tests” take a bit of time.  And before you know it?  By the time this thing is actually set and ready to print, it’s at least an hour later, you’ve burned through more than half the ink you’ve just installed, and you’re wishing that Alexander Graham Bell never invented the printer.

episode 28

He didn’t.

The best part of this soul crushing process?  Is that by the time you’ve successfully installed the ink cartridge that needed replacing at least one of the other three remaining ink carts is going to need replacing as well.

Right back to the drawing board.

Forget doing any of this on a Windows machine.  I’ve tried to go through this whole process countless times on a Windows laptop

Because I am a maschocist.

And it never works.  I can’t never get the stupid Windows machine to talk to the printer, to begin with!  And I’m not working on old, outdated machines running Windows 98.  I’m talking laptops running Windows 8.  Plug and play, right?

episode 28

My arse!

And my kids

God I love them

My kids always…always…ask me if the printer’s working after 9:00 at night for some project or paper then need to have printed in the morning.  It never fails.  And the printer is never ready to print, either.

If there’s one thing I hate, besides plumbing, Chuck E Cheese’s and 3d movies, it’s doing any kind of IT work after 9, especially dealing with this fucking printer.  By nine o clock, I’m done for the day.  All’s I want to do is sit back, stare at the ceiling and wonder how I ever got here.

But, no.  When the call comes through the help desk, you gotta answer.  And usually about an hour and half later, a trip to Target for ink and countless, absurd cursings, the printer’s final ready to do it’s job.  And your friendly neighborhood jman?  Oh…I usually have sugar plums dancing in my head.


Images courtesy of:

Cracked window:  www.webdesignerdepot.com

Alexander Graham Bell:  biography.com

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  1. My printer is very frugal on ink. That’s good.

    It is also wireless. That’s good, too.

    I have a relatively new laptop with Windows 8 on it. That’s good also. (Except for the “Windows” thing)

    My laptop is compatible with my wireless printer.

    In theory.

    I don’t know which I hate more, the laptop or the printer.

    1. I was a bit harsh on Windows 8. Only cause i’ve had nothing but trouble with it. I don’t have nearly as much trouble with Windows 7. I am by no means an IT professional though.

      I hate my printer far more than my laptop. Any of my laptops.

  2. You should invest in a printer that uses toner instead of inkjet. The ink might be more expensive initially but you can print more documents for less than .15 cents a page. Plus you can replace it with OEM products that are cheaper. We have an all in one and its sole purpose is to SCAN docs simply because the INK it way to expensive to replace.

    1. you know…i have considered that. and i don’t think that toner printers are all that much more money these days. i guess i’ll make the move when this printer really drives me over the edge. :)