Yesterday, as we prepared for Paul’s upcoming one man art show, I felt quite organized. Together we categorized the large body of work he will exhibit – listing each painting by name, year painted and medium used. I wrote them down on a physical piece of paper, which would later be typed and printed to determine a price of each item. Then it came time to put it into a word document. I did so without too much strain, being rudely corrected in my spelling as I went on. I’m beginning to believe that computers develop their own voice through their point of view of their user. In fact they have their own annoying personalities too. I had one computer several years ago which would actually say, “It’s not my fault!” when an error occurred.
After that was done I began to pull some poetry and prose I’ve done with the inspiration of Paul’s art. Digging through old files and Word Press, sent me to several that would work. Then it was time to do some printing. For once, I thought, this was going to be a piece of cake. I turned on the printer and it needed toner, so it was off to the office supply place to get some. My car had a little trouble starting. It also displayed the “service engine” light. I got it started, made it to the store, purchased the right toner (because I’d written it down on a piece of paper so there would be no question,) brought it home, inserted it into the computer and hit “print.” An error message appeared. After several attempts, it wouldn’t do a thing. The fact that I’d spent almost half a day trying to muddle through all this, made me wonder what we ever did before all these bastions of assistance were ever invented.
I was reminded of a day when we were driving, following the directions of the GPS on my phone. The pleasant voice guided us to our destination, but then I couldn’t turn off the app. I placed it back in my purse and asked my husband, why their always has to be a glitch with these electronic devices and why don’t we communicate anymore. All of a sudden, that same pleasant voice came from my purse saying, “Some days are just like that.” Well, driving down the road being told how to get there is one thing, but when your phone begins to sympathize with you, it makes you wonder.
I’m big on communicating the old fashioned way – with words coming from the mouth, body language – the use of emotional intonation and being able to actually hear and feel what the other is talking about. Being in close proximity of another person allows for true conversation to begin.
I also believe we (including me) rely too much on technology. What if the internet just crashed one day? All the information we used to store in our brains is now subject to being hacked, spammed, or lost in a cloud somewhere. Our dependence on this sort of technology becomes greater and greater every day. I don’t know if kids still pass notes in school, but if they do, they probably transmit them through their phones. There’s something more mysterious about hand writing a note and hoping that no one opens and reads it before it reaches it’s destination.
So hear I sit, trying to figure out how to make my printer functional. I think I’ll just put everything on a memory stick and take it to the local print shop for them to complete the job. It will take less time.