As some of y’all know, I’m not the sharpest crayon in the box when it comes to all these electronic contraptions we’ve got these days. It’s like everything we use has gone digital, and I’m here rubbing Ben Gay on my arthritic digits. I can use my TV remote alright, but it’s hard flipping from satellite to another source. I’ve gotta switch remotes to control the Roku that has about 200 streaming channels. And once I find the right channel, I spend another 30 minutes searching for my show. On most nights, with all that switching, searching and scrolling, by the time I start watching my show, my brain is plumb wore out and I fall asleep 10 minutes into it.
My 9-year-old grandson can finagle his way through the electronic jungle with ease. More than once, he has grabbed the TV remote from my hands so he can get to his Netflix show without waiting an eternity. When I was his age, I was pretty good at changing the channel on our TV, but then, we only got three channels, four if you count the one from Mexico that televised bullfights every Friday night.
Televisions today are so easy to get a clear picture; just press the ON button. Back in the days, my dad would have me adjust the fine tuning knob while my brother scooted the rabbit-ears antenna around until we got a good picture on that old RCA. I was 11 years old when I discovered that not every televised football game was played in snow.
When I was young, a 19-inch screen was the norm. Over the next half century, screens got larger and flatter. It’s rare to go into a home today and not see a television the size of a billboard attached to the wall. I like watching football on these big screens, but it’s hard on my neck turning my head back and forth.
Some young’uns these days spend huge bucks on phones with stamp-size screens to watch TV and sporting events. They must have really good eyes to be able to see what’s on that small screen. Dang, I have to search for my readers just so I can see who’s calling me on my phone. By the time I find my glasses, the caller’s hung up and left me a message on my voicemail. Then I have to go over to my daughter’s house to get my grandson to open my voicemail.
Do any of y’all have trouble answering a call on your phone, or is it just me? When I get a call, there is a green dot to answer and a red dot to hang up on the screen. I can’t remember if I’m supposed to press the dot or swipe it. Eventually, the ringing stops and my trigger finger is all wore out from all the punching and swiping. Then I go visit my grandson again.
Lots of folks have iPads or tablets. I’ve got one, but heck if I know what I’m doing on it. My wife gave it to me as a Christmas present so I wouldn’t be hogging our desktop computer all the time. My tablet allows me to write my column on it instead of our home computer, but I prefer typing on a real keyboard instead that little sensitive keypad on my Android. Did you know if you keep your finger on the keys on a tablet, all sorts of letters, punctuation marks and hieroglyphics will appear? My typing skills are slightly better than my phone-answering proficiency, and it’s really bad when one of my two typing fingers is sore from pounding a green dot on my stupid phone for 5 minutes.
There is some app that allows me to dictate to my tablet and it’ll write down what I say. I’m thinking if Siri can’t decipher my Texas accent, then there’s no telling what I’ll see on my Word document. I may just have to switch tablets and use the one with a picture of a big Indian chief on the cover. I know how to use that tablet.
We can all agree for sure that Clint Younts is digitally impaired. Maybe that’s why there are always a few strange sayings in his columns.