My First Mac

A Knowledgeable Mac Bigot

How My Mac Helps Me Keep My Sanity

Kevin Thomas - 2000.02.08

My first Mac was a Mac IIcx, but that's only a small part of the story.

Back in 1988, I had a friend who rented a room from me. He was very much into Apple Computers and kept trying to interest me - with little to no effect. At that time, what little computer experience I had was with a PC. Needless to say, I didn't want to buy one. He kept trying though, showing me his Apple IIc and then later his Apple IIgs. I was unimpressed.

Then he finally moved up to a Mac II. This one got me interested, but I wasn't quite ready to buy one yet. Shortly after this, he moved out to his own place. He would host computer game nights for his other friends with Macs. They would link them together via AppleTalk using TOPS (anyone remember that program?) and play games like NetTrek all night. I would come over to watch, and sometimes someone would let me play on their computer. I was beginning to get hooked but still couldn't justify the expense even to myself.

Then one day someone brought over the color version of Strategic Conquest. That did it. I had to have my own Mac so I could play anytime I wanted to.

Fortunately for me, Apple has just announced the IIcx, a slightly more affordable (if you can call a $5600 computer affordable) version of the Mac IIx that had been released shortly before. Of course, in those days, you didn't pay anywhere near the list price for computers. I ultimately purchased my IIcx for $3050 (what a steal!). However, that didn't include anything but the mouse. Not the hard drive, memory, video card, keyboard, or monitor. I had to buy everything else separately. Lucky for me, I was able to find four 1 MB SIMMs for the unbelievable price of $537 and a 100 MB hard drive for only $900. Wow!

When my friends complain about the price of Macs today, I tell them this story. I am sure most longtime users can remember those days. Since then, I've owned more Macs than I can remember, including a Mac Portable, one of the PowerBooks, several Power Macs and, finally, the iMac DV Special Edition that is 2 weeks old.

Along the way, I have gone from being an ignorant bigoted Mac user to a knowledgeable bigoted Mac user.

I now work as an IS person for the mortgage division of a midsize national bank. When I started, I had very little PC specific knowledge. I have learned a great deal in the last few years, most of it bad. It continues to amaze me that Windows came to dominate the market. I spend most of my day dealing with problems relating to Windows. But then I remember back to the many less than honest things that Microsoft has pulled over the years, and it all makes sense.

I'm just happy at the end of the day when I can go home to my Mac.

I hope that Apple continues to surprise and amaze even its most ardent fans, not to mention it biggest critics. If it does this, Apple will continue to grow stronger.

Go to the My First Mac index.

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