Sunday, November 22, 2009

Why does my 'smart phone' make me feel so stupid?

So we've been doing a bunch of technology-related stuff around our house for the past couple of weeks.

It began with David installing Windows 7. We never upgraded to Vista, but my son tells me that Windows 7 is 'what Vista should have been', and I believe him. It seems like a good OS, but the installation process was a nightmare (mainly for David, my resident Tech Support Guy), and we're still trying to find replacement software for several programs that don't run on the new OS.

Because I always believe in doing as much stuff at one time as I possibly can, to increase the stress levels as much as possible, we decided to upgrade our perfectly usable cell phones and purchase the new Motorola 'Clik' phones. Since the last thing I ever do is read the manual, I have no idea how to use the damned thing, and I'm going a little nuts trying to figure it out. To add to my confusion, I somehow managed to erase about 75% of my email address book, and am trying to figure out how to recover that data without being forced into endless data entry. I suppose I should be grateful to my father, who insisted that I spend an hour every morning one summer, learning how to touch type. That skill, once developed, allowed me to support myself as a secretary several times during my early working life, and it has sure made using computers a lot easier. That said, I now need to learn how to type with my thumbs, rather than with all ten fingers, so add that to the growing list of stuff I need to learn, just to make a damned phone call!

My phone might be smart, but lately I'm feeling kinda dumb.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

I slipped and fell this morning

It's easy to forget that stuff gets slippery after it rains, especially after several months of dry weather. As I was gathering some ripe cherry and grape tomatoes from our garden, I lost my footing and fell (not very far, and on a not-too-unforgiving surface -packed down soil). I grabbed onto the side of the raised bed to break the fall, and ended up bruising my hand in the process, and I'll probably have one helluva bruise on my right flank -- neither a big deal. Luckily, I was only carrying a small, plastic bucket (not the big ceramic planter whose contents I had just dumped onto the compost pile), so nothing inanimate was damaged, either.

So I got back up, finished collecting ripe tomatoes, grabbed the ceramic planter, and started thinking about falling in more general terms. I fell, got hurt a little, got back up, and continued with what I was doing. (This wasn't an MS-related fall, by the way. I didn't fall because I got dizzy or lost my balance. I fell because the ground was slippery and I lost my footing; a healthy person might have done the same thing.)

And then I thought: but isn't that a metaphor for life (at least my life)? I fall (or screw up, or fail in some way or other), just as we all do from time to time. Sometimes, I get hurt; sometimes, I don't. But inevitably, regardless of how hurt I feel, I get up and continue on with my life, my 'tasks'. It may sound odd, but that realization turned an unpleasant event into something positive.

Yep. I screw up. Yep, sometimes screwing up causes pain. But I somehow manage to stand up, brush myself off, and move on (limping at times) with what needs to get done.

So here's the challenge: can I focus on getting up rather than falling?