I never feel old. Never, that is, unless I’m faced with troubleshooting a tech problem or learning how to use a new tech tool, or testing out a new app. In those situations I become ancient. In fact, I think technology is the cause of all my wrinkles.
Here are a few examples of my tech trials.
Last month my home wifi connection disappeared. One techie, who should have known what was going on, told me the problem lay with the Comcast modem. My husband, who shouldn’t have known, because his expertise lies in troubleshooting problems with seventeenth century musical instruments, insisted it was the router. I turned to Comcast for help and spent more than an hour explaining the problem and answering questions via chat support only to be disconnected when its server failed. When the server recovered I saw that my tech support person had signed off while I had remained faithful during the outage. I felt as rejected as a teenager whose prom date finds a better catch a week before the big dance. At that moment I considered using wifi at the library or Starbucks and forgetting it at home altogether. Miraculously, the problem was solved when the techie who should have known better decided my husband, who had gone ahead and installed a new router, was right and we just needed to push the reset button. Duh.
A few weeks ago a slightly younger friend taught me how to use Instagram. I asked her how she figured it out. She said she spent a couple of hours reading about it on her desktop computer before trying it on her phone. Those are hours I wouldn’t have wanted to spend, though I’m glad she did. I was able to post an Instagrammed photo on Facebook. My excitement lasted only as long as it took me to realize that on Instagram you’re supposed to follow people, so you can receive dozens of photos hourly on your phone. All I wanted was to make my pictures look old-fashioned and put a frame around them.
I’m planning to buy an iPhone this week to replace a three-year old smart phone. I hate to think about what I won’t know how to do on the new phone.
Recently I whined about my technology failures to a friend and asked him whether my problems could be solved by having a teenager in the house. Having had two at home years earlier, he suggested I might be better off facing my technology challenges on my own.