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I spent much of the morning at the Apple Store with a very competent employee at The Genius Bar attempted to diagnose the problem with my iPhone.

I’ve spent a great deal of time at The Genius Bar with a variety of iPhone issues over the years and have come to one conclusion:

Whenever possible, find the least competent “genius” to assist you.  Competent employees are willing to spend hours working on your phone, diagnosing problems and attempting various solutions.  Less competent employees simply give you a new phone and move on. 

Despite a lengthy and protracted procedure which ultimately resulted in giving me a new phone, today’s visit was especially nice because I had my first experience with authorial name recognition. 

When you schedule a visit to The Genius Bar, you provide the store with your full name.  When I arrived this morning, I was checked in by one employee and then assigned to my genius.  As my genius began to examine my phone, a shorter, rounder genius approached and asked if I was “the Matthew Dicks who wrote SOMETHING MISSING?” 

After overcoming a moment of reverse-star-struck-nerdity, I told him I was.  He said hat he had noticed my name on the list of appointments and figured that since the book is set locally (even mentioning the mall in which we were standing), I was probably the author.

We had a brief by remarkably satisfying conversation about the book and then he was off to assist an eight-year-old with her iPod Touch while her clueless parents responded to his technical questions by pointing at their child, shaking their heads and throwing their hands up in bewilderment.

I lost almost three hours of my life in that store today, but I left feeling pretty damn good. 

It’s amazing what a single reader can do for you.

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