A Fine Mess

A Fine Mess: Slowing it down

2013-05-16T00:00:00Z A Fine Mess: Slowing it downRick Kaempfer nwitimes.com
May 16, 2013 12:00 am  • 

I swear I’m not a technophobe. I may be a slow adapter to some new technology because I’m not independently wealthy, but I keep track of new developments, and eventually come around to most of them.

My music collection has been purchased and repurchased several times, from vinyl to eight track to cassette to cd to mp3. I own an iPod and listen to it often.

I went from video to DVDs to DVR.

I’m relatively computer savvy for my age (I’ll be 50 this summer). I run a few websites and several blogs, and I update them myself.

I tweet, I’m on Facebook, and I’m LinkedIn.

I have a Kindle.

I e-mail. I text. And I even, on rare occasions, speak to another human with the device I carry around in my pocket—my cell phone.

The other day I was out with friends and I got a call on my cellphone. One of my friends laughed out loud when he saw it. “Is that your mother’s phone?”

“What’s wrong this phone?” I asked.

Another friend piped in. “Is that why you didn’t get my e-mail until last night? You don’t even have a data plan on that thing , do you?”

“No,” I admitted. “I can’t see well enough to read the e-mails, so I figure, why pay for it?”

“That’s because you have such a crappy phone. You need an iPhone.”

“Yeah, I know I do, but I don’t feel like shelling out a few hundred bucks right now. Deal with it.”

At the risk of sounding like Andy Rooney, you’d be horrified by some of the “old fashioned” things I still do.

I prefer doing my writing, for instance, on a wired computer with a gigantic screen. I know it keeps me cooped up in one place (my basement), but I happen to like my basement. No one bothers me here and I can actually get some work done.

You know something else? I feel like a twit when I tweet. Let me tell you what my followers are missing. My 142nd character is absolutely profound.

I don’t pay attention to Google Plus, and I have no plans to do so. Sue me.

I’ve never upgraded to Blueray, either. That’s right. No Blueray. I have an old-fashioned DVD player and a bunch of old-fashioned DVDs I never watch.

I often DVR the television shows I want to watch, but I’m just as likely to watch a television show during its regularly scheduled time. It can be done. Honest. And I don’t even mind waiting another week for another episode. It builds something called anticipation. Look it up.

I like listening to the radio. That’s right, Sonny, the radio. It only comes with an on/off switch, and buttons to switch to other stations, but I don’t even like pressing those buttons. I leave it tuned to one station at a time to get a feel for the station or show. When people reach across me to change the station, I slap their hands.

I have downloaded several books onto my Kindle, but I still prefer actual paper books. I know the Kindle can store so much more than one book, but can you guess how many books I read at one time? One. I only read one.

I also like magazines, and not just because I write for one. The photography is often beautiful, and it’s just not as beautiful when it’s the size of a postage stamp.

I can hear how this sounds. It sounds like I’m an old curmudgeon.

But I’m actually not at all. I’m a pretty easy-going happy fella that is blessed with something that many people just don’t have today.

An attention span that’s slightly larger than a gnat’s.

You don’t always have to go-go-go. Sometimes it’s perfectly fine to go slow-slow-slow. In fact, it’s my favorite speed.

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