Thirty years ago I lived beside the University of Toronto Bookstore in Sir Daniel Wilson residence. My frequent forays across the alley into the store were generally to browse the new fiction shelves. On or about this day in 1984, I discovered the Macintosh computer set up on a table just inside the front entry door of the store.

I was transfixed by this computer. My previous experiences with computers had been line prompt-driven screens on Vic-20s or large card reading HP machines in high school. The graphic user interface of the Mac opened my world to the power of computers. I frequented the store to such a degree that I began demonstrating the computer to prospective purchasers. One such buyer, Tim S., asked me to take care of his new Mac one summer while he visited Paris. What a thrill!

I was soon desktop publishing a catalogue of my 180+ cassette music collection and falling in love with a tool that truly enabled my creativity. What a watershed moment for me. I’ve been a happy geek ever since.

Thanks to my dear friend Jamie Lawson, I have one of the early Macs in my office at home. It works like a charm, and the smiling face reminds me of those winter days in January 1984 when I would set aside the novels from my first year English survey course to go play on the magical Macintosh computer at the bookstore.

Happy Birthday, Mac!