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Strange, Sad, Handy? What Kind Of A World IS This??

It’s a strange world we live in.

Used to be that if a couple were abiding in the same room at the same time, if one of them had something to say to the other they’d just lift their head from the book or newspaper they were reading or from the plate they were eating off of, and say it.

Most of the time, that’s how communication goes down at our house. But not all of the time.

Here’s another way it goes down: J is sitting at the kitchen table, doing something on his computer. I am sitting at the other end of the house – so far away, at twenty feet distant – doing something on my computer. I’ve just finished watching a funny comedy video (contrary to popular belief, not all comedy videos are all that funny). Do I call over to J that there’s this video he should watch, and tell him the title to look up on YouTube? Do I invite him over to my computer to watch the video?

No and no.

I send him an e-mail with a link to the video. Sometimes, I don’t say a thing. He’ll check his inbox eventually. Sometimes, I’ll call out, “I just sent you a link!”

Then every time thereafter that I’m in the kitchen working, I’ll look over his shoulder to see if he’s watching the video yet. Because I want us to share that experience of having laughed at the same thing.

By sending him an e-mail when I’m in the same room with him.


It’s a strange world we live in.

On the other hand, being able to communicate via e-mail (or text, if people have phones to play with and live in a non-concrete house where cell phone service actually works inside) with someone who is in the house with you can be handy. Like the other day, when I wanted to tell J something about the new computer we’re planning on buying for B. It’s going to be a surprise, so since B was in the house, too, I didn’t dare say anything out loud.

So I sent J an e-mail, then went over to the table and whispered for him to check his e-mail right now.

Kind of like how my grandmother and great-grandmother would speak Swedish in front of my mom when she was a kid and they didn’t want her to understand them. Or how like my sisters and I would sign to each other at the supper table when we didn’t want our mom to understand us.

Poor Mom.

But I digress.

It’s a strange world. In a way, technology has made it better. But in another way, it’s made the world a bit sadder, as the video below illustrates.

I need to go now. I’ve just read an interesting article that explains something both J and I need to know, and instead of walking over to him and summarizing my findings, I’m going to send him an e-mail with the link to the article.

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