Facebook made a minor change in how its interface worked, if that is even the right terminology. I went into a minor fit, immediately e-mailing a techie friend for help, in my momentary panic, because it seemed my Facebook “Wall” was gone! My friend was unavailable and after a little while of searching around on my profile and my “page,” I was able to figure it out and all was again well with the world.
I realized how my parents felt when they were trying to learn to program their VCR and never could master what seemed like such a simple thing to me. How such a minor change on Facebook could panic me and result in my kids looking at me cross-eyed like I was a simpleton (well, my kids do that all the time) was almost comical.
I had lunch with a good friend the other day and the subjects we covered really made an impact on me, as I reflected on them. I had just come from a lesson in using social media, where I’m learning the new technologies that are popular in our culture now, such as Twitter, Facebook, Linkenin, Smart Phones, I-everythings, etc.
While I’m not a total novice, I do admit that every time a new “thing” comes out, it fills me with dread. I face having to learn it, figure it out, and even understand it. Frankly, I did not “get” Twitter at all until my lessons finally penetrated my middle-aged, failing hard-drive of a brain. And that was also after reading “Twitter for Dummies”–and I’m not kidding.
We just returned from a boys trip to Vegas. By “boys,” I mean my two boys, who are almost 16 and 13 and me, the oldest of the “boys” (according to my wife). I had to consider, yet again, the dilemma we confront as parents today, with the constant assault on our values and the non-stop sexual and violent imagery our kids face. We can’t fully shelter our kids, but what should be the limits?
First, a disclaimer. It seems the reactions to my families’ nicknames has been mixed from readers. I respect my readers and I also got the same feedback from a new friend, via this column, in Australia. Isn’t the Internet amazing? So, hereafter, I will dispense with the nicknames. My wife is Loren, my older son is Will, and my younger one is David. And, I love them dearly.
I’m sure you catch just a little sarcasm in the title of today’s column. Patience has and is my biggest personal struggle. With me, with others, with the world at large. You’d think that having kids would moderate that poor characteristic. And, I suppose, to some degree it has. But, in general, this is my Achilles heel.