True Adventures in Newfangled Technology with Mother of PittGirl

The other day my Aunt S., one of my mother’s sisters, came over to Mother of PittGirl’s house to show off her twin grandsons, which ADORABLE! TIMES TWO!, and I found myself sitting on my mother’s deck with a Zima while keeping a close eye on a hawk as big as a car that had taken to doing low fly-bys just to freak us out.

So I sat in the sun listening to the two sisters chat about life, kids, husbands, cruises, salsa recipes, etc. when Pens Fan came out on the deck.

Pens Fan: Aunt S., is your purse the black one by the door in Mom’s house?

Aunt S.: Yes.  Why?

Pens Fan: It’s playing some music all deedle-dee-dee.  I think your phone is ringing.

So Aunt S. retrieved her phone from the house and returned to the deck where she proceeded to have a chit chat with my cousin who had called her.

Anyway, blah-bitty-blah-bitty blah.


Aunt S.: [Stops talking suddenly.]  Wait.  [Pulls the phone down from her ear and looks at it as if it is trying to tell her something in Chinese. Shrugs. Puts it back up to her ear.] Okay.  I’m back.  Uh-huh.  Uh-huh.  Blah-bitty-blah-bitty blah.  Uh.  Wait. [Pulls the phone back down from her ear and looks at it again.  A bit more confused this time.]

Mother of PittGirl: What’s wrong?

Aunt S.: How the hell do you answer another call on this damn thing when you’re already on the phone?

PittGirl: [Doubles over laughing and almost spills her Zima as she falls out of her chair.] You’re asking MY MOTHER?!

Mother of PittGirl: [Offended] I happen to know this, PittGirl.  Push the right-hand button!

When she finally was off of her cell phone, the conversation turned to newfangled technology that is impossible to understand:

Mother of PittGirl: … and that text messaging.  I refuse to set up my phone to receive text messages because then I will get one and I won’t know what to do.

Aunt S.: Yeah, and the other day, I saw this guy with a phone and IT DIDN’T HAVE ANY BUTTONS!

Pens Fan: That’s the iPhone.  It’s a phone, but it also has —

Aunt S.: It is just weird is what it is.

Mother of PittGirl: [raises her wine in a toast] Amen, sis!

Pens Fan and I exchanged a look that said, “God.  Are we going to be like that someday?”

I think for her birthday this year, I am going to buy my mother an iPhone just for the hours of enjoyment it would provide to me and my sisters, watching her shake it like an Etch-a-Sketch when she wants it to go back a screen.


  1. lostinpgh
    September 5, 2008 9:57 am

    My mother is the same way. She learne dhow to text message so she could text her votes for American Idol. So she how to input the number she wants and type vote. She as alos master, OK, Yes and she even figured out how to type (!). She was thrilled she figures out how to do punctuation.

    No she will steal my iPhone or my sisters iPhone. Only to play the bubble wrap game. Which brings hours of enjoyment to her and other watching her furiously taping the screen her whole body start shaking and she doesn’t breath until the end of the game. Luckily my family knows CPR.

  2. educ8rshan
    September 5, 2008 11:16 am

    oh, my parents are the same way. watching them use a cell phone, computer, heck, even the dvd player is rather amusing!

  3. ark
    September 5, 2008 1:05 pm

    my mom has had a cell phone for 3 years and I still have to check her voicemail for her because she can’t do it.

  4. J
    September 5, 2008 3:49 pm

    You and your sisters are SO going to be like that. I’m just 40, (the new 30 you know) I am “very” tech savvy, I keep websites updated, send eblasts and track open rates, use texts as a primary means of communication half the time, and I still find my 16 year old son looking at me with a mixture of pity and disgust as I pick up a blackberry and stare at it blankly trying to figure out what to do. I can handle my treo, but god help me if switch out my phone with another phone. (I’ve been known to poke at computer screens hoping it will function like my treo as well). Its probably true with website and eblast platforms too, I’d stare blankly at the dashboard whimpering and trying to operate it like the familiar system. And please don’t ask me to operate an ipod, it just wont happen.

  5. MountaineerHoo
    September 5, 2008 4:28 pm

    What is hilarious about this post is that there actually is an Etch-a-Sketch application for the iPhone. You can draw with your finger and you actually shake the phone to clear the screen — just like a regular Etch-a-Sketch :) It provides hours of enjoyment.

  6. AmyRinPA
    September 5, 2008 5:41 pm

    ROTF over the etch a sketch! OMG I hope I am never that old. I think I’m doing ok though but I think I lose serious cool points when I text with my reading glasses on because I cannot figure out how to adjust text size on my latest phone.

  7. Magnus Patris
    September 5, 2008 9:24 pm

    I was at the evil Giant Eagle a few months ago and the guy in front of me, who was about 60, was finishing having his groceries scanned. The cashier, in her mid-20s, said, “That’s $47.59” or whatever. He throws his credit card down at her and she says, more politely than I would, “Sir, you have to swipe your card here.” After 6 or 7 bad attempts, she finally takes it from him and swipes it for him. After a few seconds she says, “Sir, you have to hit ‘OK’ “. After 5 or 10 seconds of him not being able to find the giant green button that says “OK” she presses it for him. The she says, “Could you please sign your name on the screen?” The guys pulls out a pen and writes on the electronic pad. I’m so dumbfounded that I can’t speak. He bitches that it’s not working and PRESSES HARDER, until I finally say, “You’re supposed to use the electronic pen attached to the pad”. He looks at me like I should mind my own damned business, and PRESSES HARDER YET on the screen. The girl gives him his receipt and he leaves. I look at the screen and it is FUBAR with the guys name permanently etched into it. I mean my parent’s who are 20 years older than this guy and have never used the FM button on their car radio because “I don’t want to be charged for any extra stations”, know how to use the signature pad at the grocery store.

  8. cara
    September 6, 2008 1:27 pm

    omg, i’m doubled over in laughter over this one… my mother won’t set up her v/m on her cell because she’s afraid that someone will leave her a message and she won’t be able to get it…

  9. deebee
    September 8, 2008 7:57 am

    My mom asked how to get that “my space” channel everyone is talking about while holding the TV remote. I really didn’t know where to start.

  10. Саша Экстази
    October 22, 2008 6:04 pm

    Спасибо. Прочитал с интересом, и вообще полезный у Вас блог