Archive for June 14th, 2011


Technically No Action Hero

on June 14, 2011 in Misc Comments Off on Technically No Action Hero

There’s a scene in Casino Royale that brings out all my techie insecurities.

It’s the one where James Bond (Daniel Craig) gets into the security room of an exclusive resort, instantly figures out all the monitors, singles out the onsite security camera he wants, sees (apparently with X-ray vision) where the discs of those cameras are kept, finds and inserts just the right one, fast forwards/rewinds that disc with its record from a couple days earlier that shows the bad guy arriving at the resort.  Gets all the info he needs from that shot.

I would need a half hour orientation to do what Bond does in one minute.

It’s funny what can intimidate us, action hero-wise.  Martial arts?  Done ‘em — kinda.  Parkour?  Done it – badly.  Learn how to handle guns?  Yup.  Learning languages, how to climb anything, how to tail targets, etc. etc.?  Ongoing process.

You get the idea.  These challenges I can handle.  But make me face a battery of snazzy new computers and the latest in technical security devices and hotshot gizmos, and my nerves give out.  I have to put on my reading glasses (so unglamorous) and tell myself, “Don’t panic, kid – you can do it!”

I am so not like Nikita.

There she is in every episode, not only looking sleek and confident and in deadly perfect physical shape, but hacking her way into any sophisticated high security computer system that dares to stand in her way.  On the good side, she and Bond and their breed make tech savvy geekiness ultra cool and desirable.  On the bad side, they make me feel like a dim kindergartner.  Yes, there are books out there like Hacking for Dummies, which maybe I’ll look into.  Except that for people like me reading Arabic would be easier.

In the meantime, I’ve gotta figure out simply how to access the zipped artwork someone has sent me for my book cover.  And here I will pause to CHEER MIGHTILY THAT I’VE GOT SOME GREAT ART FOR THE COVER OF THE COMPASS MASTER!

Now back to feeling technically incompetent as I try to open the file folder (can’t at home ‘cause my computer software is too old/incompatible/whatever), then at work (turns out my company’s security system has blackballed this procedure), and next at Kinko’s, my last hope.

Here’s something you never hear Bond or Nikita say…

Help!