Life in progress


150. Scenes from the Second Seat on the Right

Sunday, January 28th, 10:00am
Terry and Shannon


Terry: I think I might be depressed.

Shannon: What makes you think that?

Terry: I dunno. I don’t want to do anything anymore.

Shannon: You’re just upset because you lost the Internet at home.

Terry: And with it all my friends.

Shannon: You’ve still got me.

Terry: Yeah, but you’re real.

Shannon: Wh … what does that mean?

Terry: You know. I can only talk to you when you’re not busy. Or sleeping. I can talk to people on the Internet 24/7.

Shannon: They’re real people too …

Terry: (frowns) They can’t be. They never sleep.

Shannon: Of course they sleep. They’re just in different time zones.

Terry: Are you sure?

Shannon: Of course I am. Just look it up on the Intern … (slaps her hand over her mouth)

Terry: (stares for a moment and then turns away, mumbling) I’m so depressed.


Next stop: Monday, January 29th, 5:00pm

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JusJoJan 9 – Ode to a Computer

I’m sitting in bed with twenty minutes left to get my jotting done before today changes to tomorrow. I have a glass of wine by my side and the world at my very fingertips and I’m kind of marveling, as I sometimes do, at how much the world has changed since I learned to type.

I started on my mother’s 80lb cast iron Underwood. I remember being determined to learn to touchtype even as my fingers missed the keys (which had to be punched as hard as I could muster) and got jammed painfully between them and the hammers (is that what they were called?) got stuck together whenever I hit two keys too close together and the bell dinged when I reached the end of the line. My idea of a computer was the monster at my school which took up an entire room and ate punch cards by the hundreds every minute.

And how many years later? Thirty five very short ones when you consider how long the earth has been around – I’m sitting in bed with a computer on my lap, a tablet and a phone by my side which are all capable of reaching almost any given place on the planet in an instant. Think about it. Seriously, think about it.

Ten minutes to go.

An instant.

Me, 4 minutes to midnight

Me, 4 minutes to midnight

This post is part of Just Jot It January. Join in today!


JJJ 2015


10 Random things that pissed me off today

1. People who argue on the internet, just because they can.

2. Bloggers who never ever reply to their comments, especially when they’ve written something controversial.

3. Looking out the window at a downpour when the “Weather Network” says it’s sunny outside. Don’t you people have a window of your own?!?

4. Over-sensitive people who love going out to socialize but who feel offended when strangers look at them.

5. Dog poo on the sidewalk.

6. My weeds. Not only are they choking my grass, but they keep growing, damnit!

7. My Sims Agents.

8. The pull of Camp Nano. It’s calling me, enticing me like a long lost lover…

9. Bacterial infections that live in hospitals – how do you weigh the risk vs. the benefit of going there?

10. When email doesn’t work! Please let me know if you requested my story the other day and didn’t get it – you should have.

What pissed you off today? And what made you smile? I could use one of those. 😉


How the Internet is Hurting our Kids

I’m going to start off with a disclaimer, because what I’m about to say, I realize, doesn’t apply to everyone. While I don’t want to generalize, I do find that there is a prevalence, with the introduction of the internet to the general public, toward people getting used to instantaneous gratification. It comes in the form of ‘likes’, having people agree with us, being able to buy something and have it delivered within seconds… the ways are countless.

But I have to wonder how much this bleeds into our real lives. Those of us who grew up without the internet know that sometimes you have to wait for things. We have learned how to save up, sometimes for years, to get what we want.

I’m finding that it’s much harder to teach my children the value of waiting than it might have been had it not been for the internet, and I don’t think I’m alone in this. It seems to me that there are more young people these days looking for handouts because they can’t manage to save enough – they don’t want to wait. And from what I’ve concluded, observing many young people (in this country anyway) there are more of them sitting at home on the internet relying on government assistance than ever before. For instance, according to  Human Resources and Skills Development Canada, in 2012 the unemployment rate for those aged 15-24 was 14.3%, compared to ages 25-54 at 6%. What this tells me is that more kids, in or well out of high school, are living off either their parents’ or the government’s back than those who are wise enough to have figured out that they’re not going to live long if they expect everything to be handed to them. These are supposed to be their brightest and most energetic years, and yet they sit in their rooms and surf.

Are we enabling this behaviour as parents? I think so. It used to be that families who lived off welfare taught their kids to do the same. (See disclaimer.) But now, how do those of us who do work, teach by example when our kids are learning more from the internet than they are from us, their parents? The obvious solution is to cut off the internet – easier said than done. If we do so temporarily and take the time to teach our children the values we grew up with, how long is it going to take them to go back to their “regular programming” once the computer is turned back on? I’m thinking five minutes, if we’re lucky.

It’s a difficult situation we’re in, and one that isn’t going to be solved overnight. Kudos to anyone able to resolve it before our kids turn 25.