FORGET ME NOT
New technology, don’t you love it?
That was the kids’ job—to tell you when you were doing it wrong, to point out that you couldn’t possibly understand how the DVR or the GPS works, or how much cellular data it will take to download a family movie. And coincidently, it was the movie nobody really wanted to watch.
Selecting a movie is one problem I’m glad not to have any more, or at least not as often. You gather the family around the TV and start the hunt. Everything is rated R—which isn’t the same R you remember. “Why is it R?” you wonder. Sex? Violence? Drugs?
And which is worse, watching pornographic sex scenes with your young adult children . . . or watching a science teacher give every detail on how to cook meth in the bathtub? We typically ended up with a movie nobody really wanted to watch – and nobody really liked—but it was family time, damn it! And at least one thing was always true – the Jiffy Pop popcorn was the best.
I tend to be a late bloomer in the areas of what is popular and learning new technology. For years, I had been hearing about this great new show . . . Carrie and her single friends in New York—and they talked about men and sex! So liberating! “You just have to watch it,” my friends said.
And I finally did, I started watching Sex and the City only recently, after waiting for it to get to syndication on one of those stations that plays it all the time. It seemed to be the only way I could have the TV on at the right time.
Yes, I hear you thinking, “Never heard of a DVR? Or on-demand?” And I’ve “HEARD” of them . . . it’s just not yet my time to embrace them. Give me a couple more years . . . and let them work the bugs out.
However, there is one area I wish I would have grasped a lot sooner—digital photography. It seemed like one day I was sending off my 35mm film roll to be developed, and the next day I had nothing! I loved picking up the envelope of prints. You were so anxious to see if you got the shot, you had to rip it open right there at the counter, paying zero attention to the groans that came from the people lined up behind you. You weren’t going to pay for prints that didn’t turn out, for heaven’s sake! And often, many of the people in the photos had red eyes, or were out of focus.
Any sane person would say, “That is why digital photography is so great! You can see the shot immediately, take out the red eyes, and even adjust the amount of light.”
It all sounds so great, except . . . . I forget to back up my camera—for four years—and only then did I realize I never bothered to print a single picture. It’s not an easy conversation to have with your youngest child. That day she noticed that there were books and books of photos of her older brother on the shelf—and only one photobook of her.
“How could you let that happen?” she wailed. “How can anyone be so dumb?!”
Not the first time, and surely not the last time, that question has been asked.
What I learned from that episode was just how smart my mom is. I distinctly remember asking her those very same questions. The older I get, the smarter she gets. I can only hope this will happen to me too.
But life goes on, and now you discover that you are that irritating person in the group who constantly insists that everyone must pose for a picture. “Move in a little closer . . . look here . . . smile! Darn it—I forgot to turn off the flash/the movie mode/the special effects.
Can we do one more?