Today I’m trying once again to cope with living in the electronic age. It’s not easy to figure out how to use these new-fangled gadgets. I don’t know how parents survive their children these days. They are so electronically intelligent it’s downright scary.

Betty Heath / From My Deck

When my youngsters were growing up our social networking consisted of one telephone per household and it was tethered to the wall. There were no digital phones nor cell phones; no ipods or ipads; not even Blackberries or smart phones, Twitter or Tweets. And our computer was often referred to as a dinosaur because it was so slow. When we wanted to print anything the formula looked like something out of my high school algebra class and it took forever to print on our dot matrix printer with paper that was tractor fed. Laptops were unheard of, but we did have cassette tapes. We never imagined watching anything like You Tube on a computer.

My family keeps trying to get me to bite the bullet and do more ‘social networking.’ I keep telling them that social networking is not for seniors. By the time we reach retirement we’ve done just about all the face-to-face social networking we can handle in one lifetime.

I have no desire to establish a relationship with anyone on ‘My Face’ or ‘Space Book’ or whatever the heck they are called. I have a cell phone so if any of my family or friends want to chat with me they know what number to call.

I did get a nasty call from my daughter the other day. She was worried about me not having a smart phone and she was thinking about sending me one and pay for the service each month. What a great gift, except I told her I probably would forget to have it on very often or forget to charge it.

Well, she called and left a testy message saying she is really tired of calling me on my cell phone and me not answering. It seems mine was off because I was taking a shower.

Guess what? When I called her back I had to leave a message on her cell phone. I left her a brief (testy) message which said something to the effect that I wasn’t about to spend the rest of my life with a phone tethered to my hip. And if I don’t answer her calls perhaps she should just assume I’m lying on the floor in excruciating pain and call 911 so someone can come pick me up.

These electronic gadgets give me the dry heaves. Seems to me I made it this far in life without them, so why do I have to have them now? I think it’s a conspiracy. They make them just to drive those of us who are over 60 totally insane.

When I was a girl I remember the big black monster that sat in the hallway of our house. It was called a telephone and we had a two-party line. Our ring was two shorts and one long: ring, ring, ringggggg. Now that was a smart phone.

But I really don’t want to go back to those days. I like living in this electronic age and going insane. It makes my kids worry about how they are going to manage me in my ‘golden years.’

What goes around comes around.

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