A Good Laugh for People in the Over 50 Group!: Social Media, Technology and Going Green

Guest Post by Irene Watson

I’m in Montreal, Canada today getting ready to have another “touristy” day.  Tomorrow I’ll be attending an author/client’s book launch that is bound to be a success because of the number of confirmed attendees.  So far it’s been a lot of fun and I haven’t been in the mood to write an editorial. It just wasn’t going to happen so I decided to share this narrative with you.  (I have no idea who wrote it but it certainly talks to me as I’m sure it will to anyone over 50. Besides, we all need a good laugh!)

When I bought my Blackberry, I thought about the 30-year business I ran with 1800 employees, all without a cell phone that plays music, takes videos, pictures and communicates with Facebook and Twitter.

I signed up under duress for Twitter and Facebook, so my seven kids, their spouses, 13 grandkids and 2 great grandkids could communicate with me in the modern way. I figured I could handle something as simple as Twitter with only 140 characters of space. 

That was before one of my grandkids hooked me up for Tweeter, Tweetree, Twhirl, Twitterfon, Tweetie and Twittererific, Tweetdeck, Twitpix and something that sends every message to my cell phone and every other program within the texting world. 
My phone was beeping every three minutes with the details of everything except the bowel movements of the entire next generation.

I am not ready to live like this. I keep my cell phone in the garage in my golf bag. 

The kids bought me a GPS for my last birthday because they say I get lost every now and then going over to the grocery store or library.  I keep that in a box under my tool bench with the Blue tooth [it’s red] phone I am supposed to use when I drive.

I wore it once and was standing in line at Barnes and Noble talking to my wife and everyone in the nearest 50 yards was glaring at me. I had to take my hearing aid out to use it, and I got a little loud. 

I mean the GPS looked pretty smart on my dash board, but the lady inside that gadget was the most annoying, rudest person I had run into in a long time. Every 10 minutes, she would sarcastically say, “Re-calc-u-lating.” You would think that she could be nicer.  It was like she could barely tolerate me.  She would let go with a deep sigh and then tell me to make a U-turn at the next light. Then if I made a right turn instead..well, it was not a good relationship.

When I get really lost now, I call my wife and tell her the name of the cross streets and while she is starting to develop the same tone as Gypsy, the GPS lady, at least she loves me.

To be perfectly frank, I am still trying to learn how to use the cordless phones in our house. We have had them for 4 years, but I still haven’t figured out how I can lose three phones all at once and have to run around digging under chair cushions and checking bathrooms and the dirty laundry baskets when the phone rings.

The world is just getting too complex for me. They even mess me up every time I go to the grocery store. You would think they could settle on something themselves but this sudden “Paper or Plastic?” every time I check out just knocks me for a loop. I bought some of those cloth reusable bags to avoid looking confused, but I never remember to take them in with me. Now I toss it back to them. When they ask me, “Paper or Plastic?”  I just say, “Doesn’t matter to me, I am bi-sacksual.”  Then it’s their turn to stare at me with a blank look.
I was recently asked if I tweet.  I answered, No, but I do toot a lot.”

P.S. I know some of you are not over 50. I sent it to you to allow you to forward it.

Ohhhh! This is just too real!  Do you have any stories to add?

Irene Watson is the Managing Editor of Reader Views, where avid readers can find reviews  of recently published books as well as read interviews with authors. Her team also provides author publicity  and a variety of other services specific to writing and publishing books.


Posted on April 17, 2011, in Humor, Social Media, Technology. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. My husband and I are fortunate to be surrounded by wonderful neighbors, who are year-round residents, in our Florida Condominium. To our left lives a remarkable couple, who just celebrated their 50th anniversary. Like many successful seniors, they came to America from another land and worked tirelessly to secure the American Dream for their children. Their three daughters have all earned college degrees and have been extremely successful.However, with the economic downturn, one of their daughters was unemployed last year. My neighbor, Maria, approached me while I was walking my dogs and asked if I would consider reviewing her daughter’s resume to see if it could be improved. I work as a grant writer, but while teaching English for 12 years, I always included lesson plans on resume writing, so I had some experience. Later in the day, Maria gave me a Post It size paper containing her daughter’s e-mail address, so that I could introduce myself and encourage her daughter to e-mail me a copy of her resume. When I sat at my computer to write to Maria’s daughter, I struggled to read Maria’s printing. The letters and numbers were printed neatly, but they were so tiny. Even with my most powerful reading glasses, purchased in bulk from BJ’s, I could't make out all of the characters in the handwritten e-mail address. I struggled and came up with the best e-mail address I could manage.The next day, when I was walking my dog again, I saw Maria. Humbly and gratefully, she inquired about whether I was able to e-mail her daughter. I stuttered a little as I explained that I tried to do so. I said, “Maria, I’m so sorry, but your writing was so very tiny that I could hardly read the address. I sent the e-mail anyway, but honestly, I’m not sure if I sent it to the correct address."Maria, who would rather die than inconvenience anyone, reached for my hand and put the other to her head. “I’m so sorry,” she said with a broken accent. “My daughter, Katerina, told me, “Momma, make sure when you give Katie the e-mail address that you use only small letters. So I tried really, really hard to write it as tiny as possible. I even did it two times.”I burst into laughter. I gave Maria a hug and said, “Maria, Katerina meant that you should not use capital letters in the e-mail address–not that you should write really small!” We laughed so hard that my dogs thought we were crazy. Fortunately, Maria’s daughter did get a job and all is well. http://www.readkt.com

  2. 50 or not, this blog speaks to all who are conscious to the quality of life. I am about 35 and I have long learned to switch my cell phone off and also am not easy with giving my cell number to every aquaintance. Even the cell phone service company keeps us sending spam in abundance. Technology may mean progress, or more precisely, speed. But it doesn't at all mean peace and healthy living. Thanks for the view!

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