Technology: Or How To Feel Like an Idiot

I’m what you’d call technologically challenged. If my computer, cell phone or TV goes on the blink, I stare at it with tilted head, open mouth and squinted eyes. I do this out of utter exasperation because in that moment, I have absolutely no clue what to do. None whatsoever.As much as I appreciate useful teckie items in my life, they also frustrate me on a regular basis. If you read my blog, Comcast – A Love-Hate Relationship, you’ll get the gist of why computer ailments drive me batty. Since that whole email fiasco, I’ve switched to Yahoo. But that hasn’t been without its glitches either.For instance, yesterday I checked for emails on my iPhone and there were none! That’s impossible. I ALWAYS have business and personal emails. So what happened? Where did those messages go and why? Did they have somewhere better to be? Can someone please explain this to me?!Actually, there is someone. Kellan is my computer guru and Jack of pretty much any trade. He’s my go-to guy when I want to throw my computer from my office window onto the hedge framing my walkway. I’m really mad when I’m willing to destroy my beloved hedge that’s taken years to mature (sort of like me).Kellan helped set up this blog and my business website. He also had me get a wireless router so I can stream to my TV, whatever that means. I haven’t actually done it yet, but that’s not the point. I’m all set to go once I figure out what it is and why I can’t live without it.

How streaming works. WHAT?!

Streaming, made simple…WHAT?!

I’m ashamed to admit my Smart TV is so much smarter than me. It’s loaded with seemingly endless apps, most unrecognizable to yours truly.  Do people really use all those or am I the only one living in the dark ages?I admit I’m old-fashioned where technology is concerned. Hey, I’m 58; we didn’t have computers when I was a kid. We had a beige telephone with an extremely long, twisty cord, allowing us to pace while talking. That was our high-tech way of communicating. But no matter how long that cord, I always walked too far, pulling the phone off the counter onto the orange shag carpet. That stupid cord constantly got tangled into a clumpy mess that resembled twisted Yo-Yo string.yo yoBack then we had typewriters for our formal, written communications. I learned to type in high school. Our teacher, Mr. Harris, would sneak into the bathroom during class and take a swig of bourbon when he thought we were deep in concentration. Seems I wasn’t. But that’s fodder for another blog…typewriterwite outAnyway, we didn’t even have Wite-Out (liquid correction fluid). Instead, we used white chalky paper placed under the typewriter keys, one ridiculous key at a time. It was pure torture. Seemed the more careful I was, the more mistakes I made.

A school assignment that today would take 30 minutes to write on a computer took 2 hours: 1 hour of actual typing, another making corrections. My finished paper always had so many crooked, re-typed letters, it resembled a ransom note.

Now don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying it was worse back then – or better. It was simply our reality. Ignorance is bliss, right? So we trudged along, not realizing that one day the headache of experiencing chalky correction paper would be a distant memory.

The infamous correction paper

The infamous correction paper

I’d say that since I was a kid, hundreds of technological inventions have definitely made life easier, but not necessarily better. Yes, it was a simpler time back then but whether that’s a good thing depends on how you look at it.When I was in high school, we didn’t have texting, twitter or cell phones. Facetime and Skyping were decades away. No, my girlfriends and I actually got together during the day and talked face to face. Unbelievable, huh?

Late at night our gab-fests extended to whomever I could reach from our house phone. Unless, of course, I received that dreaded busy signal.

Yes, my friends, those were the days. Back when social media consisted of endless hours deep in conversation on a beige phone with an impossibly long, tangled cord.

16 thoughts on “Technology: Or How To Feel Like an Idiot

  1. This is hysterical, Janet!
    However, even back then you Californians were at the cutting edge of technology with your ‘chalky correction paper’.
    Back in New Jersey, we had no such thing; instead we used erasers (meant for ink) until that little mis-type became a huge hole in the paper. I went to Catholic schools so perhaps it was a religious thing. Not sure. But I did have a PINK Princess phone in which to satisfy my social yearnings so I guess that makes up for it.
    You are SO funny and thanks for the Sunday morning chuckle. And, to think, last Sunday you had me in tears….the hallmark of a great writer.

    • Nora, you did have it rougher with that eraser! That’s really sad. Boy, we’ve come a long way since then, huh? Glad you enjoy the blog. I never know from week to week what I’ll be writing so it’s a mystery, even to me!

  2. Great visuals on this blog. I can’t believe New Jersey did not have correct tape… I think that’s what it was called! maybe, “correct type”….I think I still have some in the archives! Glad you had the rotary dial in the blog and that first visual was a total crack up. I can just imagine how twisted your phone cord was!!!! Kinda like our hairdryers today!

    • I wish now I’d kept that phone. When we discard items we think have become obsolete, we often realize later the emotional connection we had to them. We had that phone forever but it was eventually replaced with a long, narrow phone, again beige…

  3. Janet, this made me laugh, I remember my high school typing teacher cutting out a cardboard cover and taping it over the keys so I would stop looking at the keyboard as I typed, 45 years later I think of him every time I (still) look at the keyboard while typing. I thought that becoming a nurse would save me from a career dealing with a keyboard…boy was I wrong..now I have to use it ALL the time, ugh. Technology is not my friend.

    • Vicki, I wonder if we had the same teacher? I hear Mr. Harris taught typing for many years and I remember that cardboard trick as well. I refrained from looking at the letters when typing but for some reason I peeked when typing numbers. I regret it to this day because I still can’t type numbers without looking at the keys!

  4. Janet, Thanks for the giggle….glad to know I’m not alone. I think I want the “wireless router to stream to my tv” even though I really don’t really know what that means. I’d better get Kellans number!

    • Kellan is the best. If you ever need someone to explain complicated computer stuff to you and make it sound simple, he’s the guy. He’s a great teacher and he doesn’t make you feel like an idiot!

  5. Ha! I can’t imagine the pressure of using a type writer!
    Having grown up in this technological world, I sometimes wish that we we’re so addicted to our phones… not to mention that it’s the absolute worst when you’re out to dinner with someone and they’re on twitter or checking email! Loving your blog Janet!

    • Goji, no, I’m afraid I don’t use Twitter. As you now know, I’m technologically challenged so I don’t even know how to do it! I guess I can ask my computer guru. In the meantime, if you’d like to sign up for my blog via email, you can receive it that way each week. But I’ll look into the Twitter thing…thanks for reading!

  6. I hardly drop responses, however i did a few searching
    and wound up here Technology: Or How To Feel Like
    an Idiot | Now Don’t Get Me Wrong. And I actually do have a couple of
    questions for you if you don’t mind. Could it be just me or does it give the impression like some of the responses look as if they are
    coming from brain dead folks? 😛 And, if you are writing on other
    social sites, I would like to keep up with anything fresh you have to post.
    Could you list of all of all your community pages like
    your linkedin profile, Facebook page or twitter feed?

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