Simpler Times, Electronic Toys and the Loss of the Internet


I remember as a child how life was so much simpler. Oh, don’t get me wrong, I did have a few luxuries that kept me going: my music, books and television. Since we lived out in the country, I didn’t have much else. Also, as the youngest and only daughter, I pretty much had the world by a string when it came to entertainment. I had my own radio, which later turned into a stereo. I had a small black and white television (does anyone remember those?!!) which morphed into a small color one. Best of all, I had the bookmobile which came to the area all the time and I got my pick of books to read. I don’t remember a time where I didn’t have a book in my hand. Oh! I don’t want to forget my guitar too!
My mom always wondered how I did my homework or studied for tests because I always had music playing in the background. I couldn’t concentrate without it so it was on…all the time. Good thing too because those grades were really good too. I carried that trait into my adulthood and now, even while I am writing, I always have something playing in the background, either the stereo or the television. I need to have some kind of noise in the room to help me concentrate.
As I got older, I still had my three childhood loves, but then the computer came along and not only did I need it for work, but I had one for personal use as well. This was a natural progression for me since I worked at Radio Shack as a computer salesperson. How could I not have one? As the years went on, the electronic toys kept going up to the next level; mostly due to the fact I married someone who is into his gadgets and gets the best deals on them…ever! Desktop computers turned into laptops; stereos with record tape players changed to Compact Discs and CD players and ultimately MP3 players (generic versions though…no fancy name brands in this house!); and my books are no longer books to hold in my hand, they are read on a Kindle or generic Android Tablet. I can live with all these changes, because they have made life somewhat simpler for me.
However, the one thing that just tickles my funny bone is something that just happened recently…well…it happened yesterday. We lost our internet connection due to equipment failure and we can’t get it fixed until Friday. My first thoughts when my husband broke the news to me were, “Oh no! What are we going to do now? You have to work from home tomorrow and I have writing projects I have to get done. We need the internet!” 
Today I am actually laughing about this because I am thinking to myself, “When did we become so reliant on something so intangible as ‘The Internet’?” Seriously it is not even something you can hold in your hand. It’s a virtual world where people share everything from status updates, photos and mail with one another.” While this is a huge advancement in technology, it’s also turned us into a world filled with people walking around with our noses buried in our cellphones and doing this crazy swipe maneuver with our index fingers.
Logically I should be excited to “power down”, but reality is that my husband needs the internet to work and I have committed to several writing projects that exist only via the “online world”. Gratefully, we have received the assistance of a wonderful neighbor who was there for us during our hour of need and helped us out of our internet crises.But there is something really wonderful about this. It is the fact that my neighbor and I interacted, face-to-face, without the help of any fancy electronic toys. Reminds me of a simpler time, and it was really nice.
 
Wishing you moments to enjoy simpler times!

 

Like anything you see here? Then contact me, Susan Dusterhoft at todaysworkingwoman@hotmail.com. I am always looking for more books/products to review. I can also provide assistance with blog writing!
  • I would definitely panic if I didn't have internet πŸ˜€ I suppose I can go to a cafe, but I work online so I kinda need it πŸ™‚

  • I love your story and your thoughts. I've had similar ones. I'm completely dependent on the Internet and all my gadgets for my business and a large chunk of my daily interaction. When something goes wrong, I definitely feel that panic! I remember simpler times as well (and, yes, I remember the black and white TVs) . . . but I appreciate the technological advances and what we're able to do as a result.

  • Susan– it is sort of frightening to lose the internet. I can do without email and FB and even my favorite sites for one day– but it is only possible for me to work my job from home IF I have Intenet–and since my home office is 4 hours away, commuting is out!! I wouldn't panic on my days off–but if I was scheduled to work I would flip a bit. I don't like to miss work. And I'm set up to connect to the home office through a VPN so it isn't like I could just run to the library and do it. AND you are so right– it is the INTERNET something that isn't even tangible.

    Great article πŸ™‚ Jenn

  • Hi Susan.. here from the UBC… and I like the way you write.. ofcourse here to stay.. following you now πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

    Something similar happened to us yesterday…we lost our internet connection and the google maps just wouldn't show on our phone.. so we had to stop and ask a friendly passer by for directions..and then we realised that we hadn't done that in a while…talk about actually speaking to someone πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

  • First off this is an amazing article! I loved those simpler times before the internet which we grew up in. On several occasions we have had to do without internet and amazingly life has went on. When I absolutely had to have it, I took my lap top to the library and used their free Wi Fi. It worked. I also realized that I found plenty of stuff to do without it.

    Kathy
    http://gigglingtruckerswife.blogspot.com

  • Hi from the UBC Challenge! I know how you feel. I'm actually the youngest and only daughter. I spent a lot of time listening to my radio and spending time in the local library. The internet plays a huge role in my life as well. I'm a blogger, and it's how I met my current boyfriend. I even use it for my music! Without the Internets, what in the world would I do with myself? lol.