I'm Free! My laptop arrived today. With the help of my wonderful maternal unit (let's be honest...she did all the work. I watched "A League of Their Own" with my paternal unit in another room entirely), my quest for computer independence is almost complete. I don't know exactly what she did to the computer (or what the previous owner did that had to be redone), but she's currently getting it set up for wireless internet. No Western Union scams for this smart shopper! AND the computer is under warranty still, so even if the previous owner screwed it up badly, I can get it fixed.
I have a piece of machinery to call my own. I feel so grown up now.