I hope you all had a great long weekend.
What did I do, you ask? I drove to Palm Springs with my friend Elaine to celebrate her birthday. If this picture proves anything it’s that you can take the girl out of Laguna Beach but you can’t keep her from dropping a french fry in her bellybutton. That’s me on the right admiring my accuracy. And yes, of course I shared it with Elaine. It was her birthday.
Anyway, we got to talking about how different life was when we were in high school (1980s) compared to life in high school now (2000 and beyond). And we came up with two lists: We Had It Worse Because… AND We Had It Better Because…
After reviewing them both it was hard to say who had it better. You be the judge. Here is the first list.
WE HAD IT WORSE BECAUSE…
1. When we wanted to withdrawal or deposit cash we had to line up inside the bank, fill out forms, and deal with a snooty teller. YOU HAVE ATM’S.
2. When we needed driving directions we had to use a map (like the paper kind) or write directions on some crumpled up gum wrapper and try to read it while driving without getting lost or killed. YOU HAVE GOOGLE MAPS, GPS, and UBER.
3. We had to write letters, invitations, thank you notes, and hate mail with pens and paper. Then we needed stamps and mailboxes. Anxious for a reply? Pack some snacks and get a book. It might be a while. YOU HAVE EMAIL, TEXTS, and MENTAL TELEPATHY. (You don’t have the telepathy yet but you probably will by the time this posts.)
4. If we wanted to talk to someone and they were on the phone with someone else we’d hear a busy signal. We’d have to keep dialing for hours until they hung up. When we finally did get through there was a good chance one of our parents or siblings was eavesdropping on the other line. THE FACT THAT YOU CAN’T EVEN IMAGINE THIS SAYS I DON’T NEED TO EXPLAIN HOW YOU HAVE IT BETTER. JUST KNOW THAT YOU DO.
5. We didn’t have phones. So if we were meeting someone at the movies and they were late we’d either assume they were dead or standing us up. Since both possibilities were equally upsetting we felt evil and self-centered. By the time the person did show up we were in a terrible mood and the night was soured. A SIMPLE TEXT AND ALL IS EXPLAINED.
6. If I liked a song I’d have to buy the whole crappy album. iTUNES, SPOTIFY, PANDORA…
7. Think about how many times you hit delete when typing. Now imagine there is no delete. Every mistake you make you have to open a jar of White Out and paint over it. Wait for it to dry then start again. A single sentence could take months to perfect. By the end my fingers looked like I worked at a bird sanctuary. All those white splotchy stains… HIGHLIGHT-DELETE.
8. Have a research paper due or maybe a question about nocturnal animals? Get off your butt and get a ride down to the library. Once you’re there you better hope someone is free to help you find the right books because there are thousands of them. THOU—-SANDS. If no one is available prepare for a panic attack or an F. SEARCH ENGINES.
9. I had to know at least thirty people’s phone numbers by heart. ADD CONTACT.
10. People smoked on airplanes, in restaurants, cars… and I had the pleasure of inhaling it all. I wanted to be an opera singer. I am a writer. Thanks Dad. I’D SAY YOU HAVE E-CIGS BUT THERE’S NO WAY THOSE ARE MUCH BETTER SO I’M GOING TO CREDIT THE LAW ON THIS ONE.
I’m not even going to mention your ability to delete ugly pics of yourselves. It’s so unfair. I looked like the magician, Doug Henning, in High School. Don’t know who he is? Google him–because you can.
Growing up is easier for those of you fortunate enough to suckle on the teat of technology. But is it more fun? I’m going to say no. Next week I’ll tell you what technology has taken from you. Unless the power goes out. Then you’ll know.