"The Jingle Bell Bum" (Read The Touching True Story...please!) Comment at patriciahanrion.com

"The Jingle Bell Bum" (Read The Touching True Story...please!) Comment at patriciahanrion.com
Still available on Amazon for Nook and Kindle, hard copy booklett to re-print November 2013

Monday, July 14, 2014

Any one else have a "Tandy 1000" ?

I was wondering if anyone besides me has difficulty with technology. Our Family was introduced to computers earlier than the average family so you would think I'd be comfortable with all the screens, key-boards, connections and USB wires. But, Alas! Not so.
Young Patrick...really loved the Tandy 1000.

We purchased one of the first available home computers in 1979. The "Tandy 1000" from Radio Shack.(I'm sure they decided on the name because it cost over $1000.)

All the kids easily learned to use the computer, and then of course...they fought over the device to play "Pong" or "Asteroids". The games were inserted into a slot on a "floppy disk" so they could magically appear on our black and white screen. I knew then, it was the beginning of the end as far as parents having a shred of wisdom. 

A few years later when Patrick (our oldest son) came home from his mission he introduced us to the internet...at that time we were still on the black and white screen. The internet we had was called,"Free-net". And even then the "Net" was not free...We had to pay because we could only connect by dialing another area code. This of course ran up the phone bill. 

I think because of his early introduction to computers, Patrick took the (now obsolete) Novell Networking course offered at his University. During those years every time he came home he seemed to add something new to our humble 126K computer. This was the computer the rest of his siblings would fight over to get homework completed and printed out on the dot-matrix printer. This poor thing often froze and gave us problems.

We gave each child their own disc to write and store their homework. Then if things went wrong they blamed each other for "putting boogers" on their floppy discs.

These days kids are comfortable with technology at a very early age...our daughter's 4 year old Luke had to show us how to down-load Skype...another mystery!
Zack, James, Luke and Harrison use computers all the time.

Through the years the pattern of Patrick's visits continued and his habit of downloading new programs to our computers got much worse after he became a security engineer at Microsoft.

I don't know about anyone else but depending on all this technology scares me. I feel like at anytime all this progress could be blocked, shut off, or someone could put a booger into your I-Phone. That would be not any fun at all!

Getting help for any technology is the worst! We were on our way to a class to find out how to work the free "Tablets" we got from Verizon and Pat the dad forgot the address. We were already late so I tried to call the listed number to get directions. I realized my mistake too late as I already knew that calling or going into a Verizon store is like getting lost on the MTA or being sucked into a Black Hole. And if you get into their system you then must work your way through the matrix of automated algorhythems to finally speak to a person named Sandeep or Sheep-dip, or Rip-rap. And this whole exercise is very frustrating.

This day,when I finally got a real live person it was obvious the fellow was not from around here. After he asked for my phone#, name, and wanted other personal information I revolted and became, (I am embarrassed to say)...belligerent!

"Are you in a store, or a call center. Where are you?" I yelled..."A call center in Bangladesh?"

After a long silence he said, "Well, um, Mrs. Lady, your not too far off."

I immediately hung up, as the whole conversation reminded me of calling a help number one time when our computer screen went black. The guy kept asking "What does the bios say?"

"The screen is BLACK," I responded on that day, "How the heck do I know what the bios says!" Ahem, As I also recall on that day...I hung up."

Technology is for the young. So don't mess with my program when I have finally figured it out. I don't want to have to call one of the grandkids for them to guide me through fixing it! As it is all 16 of the grandkids ages 2-22 think we are ancient and wonder if we ate with knives and forks when we were young!


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