Saturday, May 28, 2011

A Fraidy Cat Takes on Technology

Technology brings out my fraidiest cat. I have a former secretary that will attest to the fact that her most frequently uttered phrase was, "Step away from the copier. Step slowly away from the copier."  She used to stand behind me when I typed my own documents just so she could heckle me. I remember her fondly despite the abuse! Really, I do.

If my husband changes so much as an icon on my desktop, I am reduced to tears. I can't tell you WHAT he changed, but I know he has been up to something as soon as it boots up. After twenty-two years of marriage, he has learned to tread softly on my computer. It has saved him a lot in alimony payments.

I used to believe I had found an ingenious answer to my phobic avoidance of all things technological. I married a nerd and birthed two of them.  (The youngest one will drolly correct me when he reads this blog with the reminder, "MUUUUTHER! I am a geek NOT a nerd."  Who knew there was a pecking order?) I sauntered along rejoicing in my smug satisfaction until I went to the writer's conference.  Boy! Did that mess things up.

In short order, I learned that we famous writers-in-waiting have to have "platforms".  At first, I felt a mixture of confused relief.  I never knew I had to be a carpenter to be a writer, but I know my way around a few tools. So, I thought I could bluff my way till I had taken a vocational course or two.  But, nooooooo! These platforms involve websites, blogs, twitter, business cards w/ scan-able little splotchy thing-ies that smart phones can use to jump to your website. The list made my head swim. I had just survived my close encounter with those three Flannery O'Connor inspired locksmiths.  I was already traumatized without this new technological reality. AURGH!  I had a choice.  Embrace my geeky side--I must have one since I birthed 2 of them--or abandon my life long dream of being a real writer.

Imagine my relief when one of the faculty pointed out that no matter how far we lag behind the techno-curve, no one can really keep up with it.  She further pointed out that someone will always be coming along behind us making us an expert to those who follow us! HAH! I was a virtual expert in the making! I am a genius!

Today, as I was contemplating my future, I announced tonight's blog title to my three testosterone units. All three burst into laughter.  Son #1 asked, "Whacha gonna do? Master the light switch?" I'm thinking about how close he is to NOT seeing his 21st birthday. He is going to want me to remember him fondly when I get famous and all. Lucky for me, son #2 is a GREAT teacher whom I will remember fondly when I'm at my first book signing with my first mega-millions advance in my pocket. He taught me how to text message.  The week before the conference, he taught me how to use a flash drive.  Which can also be called a thumb drive but not thumb nail. I point out this distinction to spare you some embarrassment in social situations if you are making polite dinner conversation with a group of engineers. But, I've said too much already.

And so tonight, I'm setting some goals. I intend to boldly go where none of my former secretaries thought I could go..even if my three Doubting Thomases are dubious. I'm looking at webhosting sites. I'm reading up on how to make my blog more like Ree, the Pioneer Woman, Drummond's.  If I could figure out how to say something in 140 characters or less, I'd sign up for Twitter while typing this blog entry.  That'll take a while.  No comments from the peanut gallery. I know who you are and where you live!
When I'm done, I'll sell a book about the experience, and Katie Couric will call since Oprah isn't doing that any more.  Oprah's really gonna be sorry she never met me in time.  Really. Until then, I'm going to start a support group for the technologically challenged.  There is a test for membership.  One question: What is a flash drive? If you answer it, your membership application is refused.  I AM a genius!


  1. A flash drive is a modern floppy. Ha!

  2. Oh....what a disappointment that you won't be able to join us! But, thanks for the info!

  3. A flash drive is what happens when you are sitting at a red light and the young whipper snapper speeds by in a flash. ;)