Friday, November 11, 2011

"What your mom buy you a 'puter for Christmas?"

Imagine what this world must look like to a guy who stepped out of a cryogenic sleep chamber, after being frozen for years. If you're like me, you immediately think of the movie Forever Young starring the sometimes controversial Mel Gibson. He plays a World War II era dream boat pilot who signs up to be part of an experiment for his pal. They forget about him and he wakes up in the 90's, not knowing what happened. Long story short, he meets a budding actor by the name of Elijah Wood and learns about the things he's missed.

Now, if I ever find myself in that type of situation, I wouldn't wait to hear about new technology. I'd want to find out if holograms existed and if people are actually having sex with robots. Maybe nano technology took leaps and bounds and disease is cured with a robotic army attacking viruses, but I have a feeling the common cold will still plague us. I would do all this after mourning the loss of my family and everyone I've ever met, of course.

Well, while I was sitting down at the coffee shop I over heard some older gentlemen say, "something box."


"Yeah. That's it."

I thought to myself if that's how I would actually turn out in my old age. Everything I mentioned up top was the follow up to this thought. It's, honestly, more of a declaration that I wouldn't turn out to be like these gentlemen. But, the above situation would also happen while I was still 28 and frozen then thawed out fifty years from now. So, would we become like our grandparents, handing over our new cell phones to our grandkids because we can't figure out how to work the damn thing?

But, the question that I keep asking is how hard must it be to not take notice of new technology around you? Did we take a huge leap that it created this rift between people who kept up and those who didn't? Looking back fifty years from today, the world was completely different. It's hardly a shadow of its former self. Rather than growing the guts to walk up to a girl, guys are fawning over women from behind a computer screen. They don't pick up the phone and call, they send texts, which led to "sexts", which prove that technology is now in the bedroom, and how can you ignore that? Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against flirting via texts, but there's a problem if your only interactions have been based in text.

What weirds me out the most is that kids are insanely competent with new devices. I can't watch a toddler play with an iPhone before they've learned how to properly wipe their own butt. A friend of mine told me about how is kid would take his phone and play around with it. They knew how to take pictures, access them when done, how to play games, and how to avoid deleting applications. Granted, he has two of the smartest kids I've ever seen in my entire life. In fact, one of them speaks better english than I do after a few beers, and he's only 2. (Please don't read that as the two year old drinking beer.) But, something about watching them makes even me feel a little obsolete.

Then I think back to grandparents. I want to be the grandfather who takes things away from my grandchildren in order to get it right, and to be what internet speak defines as L33T (elite). I always want to be right there, on the edge of what's new. From what I've noticed in my day to day life, it isn't that hard of a challenge.

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