Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Can You Hear Me Now?

I, like many of you, grew up with tethered phones.  Short of a tornado that took your whole house, you never lost your phone.  You also didn't leave messages for people, because unless you were calling a doctor who paid a service to answer their phones after hours, there was no voice mail.  When we dialed the phone, we actually dialed the phone.  How many millennials use that term without the slightest idea that originally it was a literal description?  And, oh, if you wanted to know who was on the other end of a ringing phone, you had to pick up the receiver and ask.  BTW, if someone was actually away from the house, say living life or something, the phone went unanswered.  How did we get by in those dark ages?

I'm not really pining after those bygone days, but there was something kind of nice about not being instantly available to anyone and everyone.  Of course, if you ask my kids, they will tell you that I am really bad at keeping my phone on my person.  The rebellion of mid-century, middle child...

I am blessed to live within 20 minutes of all of my grandboys and girlies, meaning I don't have to spend a lot of time talking to them on the phone.  This is probably a really good thing, for reasons that aren't necessarily 21st century.

Under the best of circumstances, toddler speak can be difficult to interpret.  Frequently, the conversation is easiest to follow while chasing after the wee one to see what he sees.  At least it gives you context and a fighting chance to follow his unique stream of consciousness and foreign sounding phrases.  Even when you are two feet from him, he's too much a busy body to actually sit still, face you and speak.  This multi-directional speak is exacerbated with a phone that never moves in sync with the miniature among us.

Additionally, as it was a lifetime ago, it is still difficult to hear when a child shakes his head.  Of course, there is Facetime, which my lovely grandgirlie, Bella, employed first thing in the morning on my recent birthday.  What a sweet, sweet start to my day.  She might not agree, as she got to see me still in my jammies, hair and makeup still on my "to do" list.  And that little picture in the upper corner that shows me how I look to the other person mocks me!  Why can I never hold the phone so my nose doesn't fill the screen?  Most of the time I rather like my nose - except when Apple gets a hold of it...

The other day, Josiah and Elijah were fighting over the "phone."  Granma to the rescue - I found an additional phone not currently in use.  Yep, they were both calculators.  At least I didn't have to worry about them buying an unauthorized app...

The best part about the phones of today is that grandones are the best teachers.  All too often I hear myself saying, "Hey, how did you do that?"  With a shrug that says 'she's old - I'll have pity,' they let me in on Apple's best kept secrets.

Just reaching out to touch someone.  Now THAT dates me!

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