The Printer


Mr. Idries, Magdi

I rate your ‘Brown bag’ presentation on ‘Printing’ as an A+. I attended that meeting where I asked a question. My question was, “How can I stop bulk printing if it has been started accidently?”

You answered that the ‘Cancel’ button must be pressed to stop the bulk printing immediately was accurate. However, my experience in this regard is very different, and I must share it with you.

Once, I was reviewing my novel of 999 pages on my computer. When I was on the page number 99 I accidently pressed the ‘Print’ button. Realizing my mistake, I pressed the ‘Cancel’ button immediately, and ran to the printer to check if I have successfully canceled the job. To my disappointment, the printer was still busy printing. I hurriedly came back and pressed the button again. Not only that, but I turned off the computer and pulled all the input components away from it to make sure. I checked the printer again only to find that the printing was continuing unabated. This was the moment I felt the nervousness creeping up on me. I removed all the paper from the printer tray and pulled the plug from the wall, but to little avail. The printing was still going on.

This behavior of the printer was monstrous; however, I am not a person who concedes to problems easily. I ran to the next room to fetch an axe. I brought the axe and hit the printer with full force. I saw the parts of the printer flying all over the place. I had destroyed the printer, and for a hundredth of a second I felt proud of my victory against this monstrous, and may be evil, printer; but in the second hundredth of that second I was crying and pulling my hair (the remaining). The printer stopped at last but not before printing 9999 pages.

I understand that now you have a question for me. You have taken everything that I said as true, but if the novel had only 999 pages, why did 9999 pages came out of the printer? The answer is that when I hit the printer with the axe, it disturbed the printer’s setting and as a consequence it spit out 9999 pages.

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Yemeen Zuberi

Yemeen ul Islam Zuberi is an ex-journalist from Pakistan. He writes in Urdu and rarely in English. Besides essays, he also writes poetry. In Pakistan, he worked for different newspapers for 20 years. Now lives in the US.

yemeen has 22 posts and counting.See all posts by yemeen

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