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Friday, August 3, 2012


Normally I don't watch much television, but for the Olympics I make an exception. Fortunately or unfortunately, that exception includes commercials.

There is a company called Xfinity (huh? is that a word?) that is trying to play with my head. A cell phone appears on the screen. "This is your television," says the announced. Then a television is shown. "This is your computer." And so on. At the end, some unidentifiable gizmo appears, and I'm told that it's my remote, but I'm past caring.

After having seen this - and commercials like it - a few times, I think I'm getting the message. I'm obsolete.

My day jobs are writing, and welding. I write to tell the kind of stories I'd like to read, and I weld parts that people put on their airplanes. I don't communicate, and process information, and so it seems - I'm outdated. Like the Tyrannosaur bleakly eyeing the first furry critters (soon to be mammals!) that are always smart enough to stay out of reach, like the Cro-Magnon who dimly understands that the Neanderthals next door might be onto something with this thing called language, I'm in the backwash of the Wave of the Future.

But there was another commercial, last Olympics, from a cell-phone company. It showed a family walking through a museum. Each member - Mom, Dad, son, daughter - had their heads down while walking past the exhibits, totally engrossed with texting someone. "I'm at the museum!"

Oh, yeah? What did you see?

If you'd have looked up you would have seen displayed a slower and simpler life, and if you'd stopped you might well have felt their loss.

And I would have waved back out at you, for while you may long for the Good Old Days - I'm busy living them.


  1. I just want a phone that PHONES. Maybe also to text to my daughter. I don't care about APPS. Or music. I have an ipod. Which, I must say, kept me sane on my trip home. Suo Gan sung well, while I struggled with being strung out, was NIIIIICE.

    Although, it's a good thing I have a list of phone numbers on my cell phone...so I can do the "is the boy dead?" check every once in a while.

  2. Now that's funny. lol So true about texting, etc. I'm 29 and there are many times I feel obsolete!