I Feel So Old

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Ah for the halcyon days of yore when a mobile phone meant a phone with a long cord so that you could carry it through the house, and “party lines” ensured that neighborhood gossips never ran short of fodder.  Hmmm, perhaps not so halcyon after all.   Of course we also didn’t have a substantial segment of the population acting as if their phones are surgically attached to their faces.  Technological advance merely places new tools at our disposal, but they do nothing to ensure that we will use the new tools, more often new toys, wisely.

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13 Comments

  1. Hah! I may be dumber than my smart phone, but at least I know how a rotary dial works.

    Stoopid kids.

  2. No not stupid. Why would they know how a rotary phone works if they’ve never had one or needed one in their lives and no one ever taught them to use something that didn’t exist in their environment?

  3. At least “ring tones” have improved.
    Did you know the “rotary phone rings” were purposely designed to be as alarming and annoying as possible?
    – for persons to answer quickly – not to tie up switchboards.

  4. I lament the nearly imminent death of the manual transmission in the US.

    I have despised automatic transmissions since I started driving, but most Americans don’t even know how to drive a car with a stick shift.

  5. I’m not smart enough to own a smart phone. I went with my sister to buy a new Subaru,. She insists on a stick shift. She likely bought the last one Subaru made. The new Subaru my sister-in-law owns cuts off the engine at red lights and restarts when she takes her foot off the brake. My Subaru (the warden made me do it) has a Trump 2020 sticker.

    I have a rotary phone on the land line in the basement. I never answer the land line, anyhow.

    I’m so old I remember when American leaders pretended to put ordinary Americans first.

  6. Michael Dowd-
    I had that article open in another tab, hadn’t read it yet, had a bet with myself that they’d make the same dang mistake that every other blame-technology thing did.
    I won….
    Notably, the data the first study used is self-reported, which is already an issue, but most importantly they don’t try to figure out which way the association goes.
    If I had ten cents for every time one of my friends had posted “ugh, sick and hurting, can’t go out” post, I’d be set for coffee for a good bit.
    Some of them are chronically ill, too– it’s an option when you’re sick, tired, hurting, can’t get out but desperately want to have a conversation. (Or, in my case, when you want to have a conversation that doesn’t involve that person’s poo or a rather disjointed summary of a series you haven’t read. Yay, mommy bloggers.)
    Social media also allows an escape from horrific face-to-face social circles. Folks who are being bullied are going to be more depressed, especially if they’re adults and have to hide that they’re to the right of Stalin for fear of being violently driven out of their profession, possibly quite literally.
    Third angle, those who have high verbal skills are not going to like online communication; just writing what they would say will get radically different results due to the lack of the force of their personality and the transient nature of speaking. Expectation mis-match causes stress.

  7. (study #2 similarly assumes a single cause to explain a symptom; basic devil’s advocate should have suggested that there’s more than one reason teens on social media would be depressed, since it’s HEADLINE NEWS that there are social media mobs– and that people mask their identities to avoid them; a simple question like “why do you use social media” and “do you use social media anonymously” plus “what kind of social media do you use” would be much more useful, though less suited to polemics.)

  8. Penguins Fan, many cars today have a switchable manual and auto transmission. My older Volkswagen has a DSG auto/manual, and my wife’s Ford has paddle shifters’. Neither are the old style rotary manuals, but they are manual and in some ways faster and easier. There’s no clutch and a shift is immediate.

  9. I tried to explain to my sons that you actually could learn who was being called by the different sounds the rotary made with more familiar numbers. For instance, I knew my Mom was calling my Grandma, simply by hearing that combination of short and long dials per number. They still can’t quite imagine.

    PENGUINS FAN
    I do to, even though I never learned to drive one.

  10. TShaw.. On one of Scotty Kilmer’s car repair videos, he pointed out that those cars that shut off and start up at red lights are starting to show engine damage. There should be a button to shut that system off.
    David WS – no clutch, not a manual transmission. I will go to Poland and buy a car with a manual transmission if I have to. Most cars in Europe have a clutch.
    Dave Griffey – never too late to learn.

  11. I’m remembering the young intern working for me looking dumbfounded at the typewriter I’d told him to use to fill out some old school order forms (carbons attached). I see from this intertubes thingy that he has in the intervening 14 years acquired a PhD (in a subject which requires you know stats).

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