Tuesday, July 25, 2006

She's Going Digital ...

Great jumpin' Jesus ... repent! The end is nigh! Mom wants to get a computer.

About three years ago, Brother ThirtyWhat called around the holidays with an idea. He wanted to buy our parents a computer and make it a present from us kids. His half would be the computer itself ... my half would be the training, support, and upkeep. I explained that it was a great idea ... and one I'd be more than happy to agree to ... however, the last thing Mom and Dad wanted was a computer.

Oh, how he argued with me. "They need one ..." Maybe. "They'll enjoy it ..." Maybe. But the problem was that they didn't want one. I couldn't make him understand that it doesn't matter how fun a present might be ... if the recipient refuses to play with it.

So, Christmas day he made a point of telling my parents that he would've bought them a computer ... if it weren't for me. For one blessed moment, Karma shined it's benevolent face down on me. Dad looked puzzled and said, "Well, why would you want to do something like that in the first place?" And as my sibling tried his best to sell them on the idea ... they deflected each point with ease.

"But the internet can be so entertaining."
"We've already got cable ..."

"But we can exchange pictures."
"You gave us a brand new camera last year ..."

"But I could e-mail you every day."
"So pick up the phone ..."

Fast forward to last night. As we sat in her apartment visiting, out of the clear blue sky, Mom brought up the subject of computers. She'd seen an advertisement for Insight's service and started asking questions. She was worried about viruses ... worried about whether to get AOL ... worried about how e-mail worked ... nothing too bizarre. Just the normal concerns you'd expect from someone who'd never set hands on a keyboard.

Her apartment is small ... and I do mean small ... and there's really no place for a computer desk. So, I suggested she get a laptop ... and if she went with Insight, I could put a wireless router on her connection so she could be on the internet in her recliner, on the couch, in bed ... wherever. She's sold. She wants it yesterday. I have a sneaky suspicion this urgent need involves the Big Brother live feeds ... but I have no proof.

So, at some point I'm going to sit down with her and let her play with my laptop. You know ... make sure she likes the feel of it. If this exchange is at my house, I can even let her surf for awhile and watch the live feeds.

I'm not sure if this is going to be a great new chapter of her life ... or an amazingly frustrating chapter in mine. In all honesty, there's a good chance it'll be both ...

She blinded me with science
"She blinded me with science!"
And hit me with technology

Thomas Dolby - She Blinded Me With Science


  1. Nick, A parked car,10:22 PM

    I strongly recomend a mac laptop for her. Unless you are a totally devoted windows gal. My grandparents are looking at getting a mac mini due to their fear of viruses. Plus, Mac is all i know and with them being about 4 blocks away, I will be the one runing down there all the time to "help". I guess the free food and laundry service will be woth it though, hehe.

  2. Well, here's my thoughts on that subject ...

    I'm not necessarily a "devoted" windows fan. The only reason I would lean towards a windows-based laptop for her is because that's all I've ever used.

    For years we've talked about getting a mac ... but we've just never made the leap. So, since I have no experience with it ... I hesitate to take that route.

    Whatever the OS, I don't see Mom doing that much on it anyway. I mean ... I can't imagine her creating a spreadsheet ... let alone working with graphics, video, etc. I think her intentions are to get online ... maybe have e-mail ... and get the BB live feeds.

    But hey ... who knows ... before it's over, she may have a myspace page and an iTunes account. That'd be kinda fun ... weird ... but fun.

  3. Well, for simple stuff, Macs are far easier to use and learn on. If you go that route and need any help just holla.