I was talking yesterday morning with my cousin Wanda (actually trying to wean out of her what she thought of this blog)..and lamenting about the previous day’s “interesting” happenings with my computer challenges. Now, Wanda lives in a retirement community in Florida (yes, blue hair territory although Wanda is pretty much the youngster – toddler, maybe, and has not at all graduated – at least not yet – to blue hair status) she is considered to be the computer expert – the whiz kid – the scholar – the one in the know in her community; and yet Wanda is about at the same level as I am, meaning we know how to not only turn on the computer but can actually do some “stuff”. Ah, light bulb time for me… I remembered then that Loren’s mother absolutely refused to learn how to use a very basic calculator which we were trying to teach her to help her with her bank statements. She didn’t want a microwave – none of those new fangled thingamajigs in her house. We totally failed to teach her anything on the calculator… she could not “get” adding and subtracting, it was No Way.. Not for me… God didn’t intend for me to use this “thing”. The microwave, however, was a success after much badgering and plenty of things being burned on the stove while she was busy doing something else. The microwave became her best friend. I remember Uncle Ernie refusing to have a microwave in his house because he feared the radiation… eventually.. the microwave became his best friend, also. So what is the problem? Well, they didn’t grow up with any of these new fangled things… nor had they been invented during most of their adulthood. They just didn’t have a mind set for these new inventions.
Now on to me… when I went to school… no hand held calculators… we learned our higher math with slide rules (if you don’t know what these archaic things are, count your blessings)… when the hand helds came out… because we were a different generation and actually embraced new gadgets… we quickly learned the new fangled things and tossed out the slide rules… Computers came later… after high school and after college… (come on… the small home style ones, not the big room ones), in fact I was teaching when they introduced the Apple and Oregon Trail for us to use with the kids. We went on to learn DOS, Word Perfect, Lotus, etc… we started out simple, but learned as new things were introduced. Unfortunately, the “computer age” speeded” up as we slowed down a bit – sorta got on with our lives, having children, working in our various degrees, etc. If we didn’t have day to day contact with computers, we just didn’t keep up and started building barriers and “dumbing down”. Then when computers became small enough and cheap enough to purchase for our homes, we heavily relied on our kids to lead us through and do the hard stuff for us… did nothing for our egos… a 10 year old knowing a heck of a lot more than we do. Computers were nothing special for our kids… they know their way around them, even if it isn’t in their “field” of study… they grew up with them… There will come a day when they will be challenged by the next generation of “new stuff” being invented… and probably not until then will they understand why it is difficult to come up to speed on something that is second nature to them.
What I am saying is give yourself a break… look at all the things that has transpired in our lifetime… not only computers, calculators, microwaves, discovery of DNA, splitting of the atom, VCRs, DVD, dishwashers, IPods, I Phones (cell phones), pizza delivery, drive up coffee with fro-fro coffee drinks, etc, but, folks —– man has walked on the moon (I am sure you can think of more… well, can you? As I was talking on the phone, I remembered “party lines” when we had to share our phone lines with 6 or 7 other homes.. was entertaining, but it was hard to get a clear dial tone. )… …. We find it easy to look back at our folks’ generation and see them going from horse and buggy to cars, from candles to electricity, from “speedy” ships crossing the oceans to air travel. Certainly, much has happened in their generation… but it has in ours, also… so let’s make a pact… let’s give ourselves a break… we will “get” this computer stuff… breathe, breathe, breathe. Hmmmm today… since I have been talking so much about Wanda… think I will break out some Reindeer Blend to grind and roast…. And then brew… Oh, goodness, I can smell it now…. Can you? Also, if you are finding any value at all in these blogs, do refer them on to your friends and acquaintances…. See you tomorrow… so far so good.. I AM actually doing this everyday… woooooweeeee I am on a roll….