This is the first post I’ve done since I got Athena working again. It’s been touch and go. I was afraid that I lost the last three pages, but I double archived them. I had to reformat them, which took a long time, but not as long as making them again.
I appreciated the detailed responses about various ways to address my technical problems.
In the end I had to restore Athena to its factory settings. Three or so years of hard use and random issues had built up to the point that even simple tasks were becoming nearly impossible. It couldn’t recognize hardware, read most CDs, and many other little problems. For someone who uses a computer as much as I do, clearing away all that crap is like having your brain streamlined. It’ll take some time to restore everything, but ultimately things should get easier.