I blog gluten-free

Monday, May 9, 2011

The Electric Ties That Bind

Are we tied to electronic devices? From computers to smart phones (I think my Blackberry really is fooling itself calling itself a smart phone, but then, it does a lot of work for me, from finding maps and whatnot, to keeping me sane in situations where I need a distraction, ASAP!) to e-readers...a lot of what we're taught in kindergarten seems to become something we can only do with a computer.

I was taught, with a lot of effort- to write nicely- it explains why my writing has evolved to its' present state. Strangely, my father's handwriting made a doctor's chicken scratch look neat and tidy... but I was taught the old fashioned way... and even my print is more stylized. Because he didn't want me having to use computers to have neat handwriting, or to be understood... I saw an old scrawled note "Please excuse absence on the 15th" that frankly, if I hadn't known better would have reminded me of something I could have written in 1st grade.

The days of ink and paper may be going...I'm kind of sad for it to go. But, there are a few books I can't find no matter how hard I try, and some I need to replace...that my collection is so small, after years of finding chosen favorites and borrowing from Grandma's attic, saddens me. For that, perhaps a Nook or Kindle wouldn't be so bad, we shall see.
I keep hearing that I should get an E-reader, from a Kindle to whatever that thing is Barnes& Nobel and Border's sell as their home brands. I keep resisting. I like to feel the paper and smell the paper and ink. There's enough computerization. My father made me learn penmanship, it's amazing to see how many people have no idea how to do anything but print block letters now.

.Not to mention of course, the entertainment I've experienced (No wait- "entertainment" is not the word I was shooting for---try sadness)
At a relatively nice restaurant, the bill came to $15.20. I paid with a $20.
The registers were down. The poor girl at the register, stood there, almost weeping. She had apparently not remembered rather basic arithmetic. Writing on a menu, I managed to show her that she should return $4.80.
And that 100 cents equals $1.00 (showing my work)...so 100-20= 80, and so on, and so forth.
Her manager looked rather disgusted, and I am glad that I didn't become one of those nasty old farts who complains about technology and how it stupefies us all.

Now, technology is great. Using, it, from here, I was able to send a list from the the Gluten-Free Registry, a site that lists places to go for gluten-free products when a zip code or city is plugged in, straight to G's Blackberry.
And tell her, still many miles away "Whole Foods" which is a safe bet in almost any large metropolitan city. Thanks to technology, I knew my nephew, C., ate well that night, crisis averted and that she now has a resource. I thank the people at 1in133.org who answered a few questions for me, and set me straight, as well as people in that same city who offered time and helped me out with questions as well. Thank God for technology, it's been a life-saver.

But do I really want to be tied down by one more battery to charge, one more electronic device that could fail?
Saving the trees, planting seeds... yes, a marvelous thing- but what's wrong with good old bound books?
*There may be some little irony in that this is blogged, from a laptop, as opposed to written on parchment. Meh. Welcome to the 21st Century.

Ps. Yes, I am one of those dreadfully old-fashioned people who likes to buy stamps and write handwritten letters, much to the shock& delight of some people. It requires time and effort, and I love it.

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