Ever since my son got an XBox360 for Christmas and wanted to play games online with his friends, my life has been intermittently hellish. The initial setup was all kinds of difficult for reasons I can no longer remember, because they pale in comparison to the recent problems.

Due to a conflict between my wireless router and the XBox, my son’s security settings were restricted, which meant he could only play with a small group of friends. So I acquired a new router (thank you Row-bear). And then a new ISP came knocking, literally, and won me over by telling me how much money they could save me monthly if I made the switch from my existing service provider. Which I did.

And of course, after the switch, the router got knocked out. Which meant no Internet. Which meant no XBox360 and no Facebook, IMing or all the other things that teenagers rely on to live and breathe in this day and age, not to mention their mother, who has a serious laptop addiction.

Which meant I spent the past two hours on the phone with the router people in Pakistan, trying to get them to explain to me how to reconfigure the router. Which involved sinister black screens and typing in numbers and commands like “config renew” and other equally frightening phrases. But holy hell, in the end I was successful. And now the children think I am some kind of technical wizard even though at one point I think I wept bitterly to the ISP people, assuming, wrongly, that they were to blame for my latest Internet woes.

It must have been nice to be a mother in the 1950s, when you got asked  to darn a sock or sew on a button instead of answering pleas to figure out why the computer is fucking up and being confronted with a tangled mass of cables and flashing lights and angry red slashes on the screen letting you know that you’re not connected and that you may never be connected again.

I need a drink.