I’m half-listening to Frontline as I clean my kitchen. It’s about teenagers and how they use the Internet to socialize. They use it to a degree I can’t comprehend. I’m happy to e-mail my friends and write in this blog. I have accounts on Facebook and MySpace which I don’t bother with much. I’ve used the occasional dating website in the past. And that’s about it for my online social life.
Every generation goes through this. In the ’20s it was cars; in the ’50s rock and roll. The paranoid parents and shrill public officials decrying the terrors of the Internet remind me of the people who thought Elvis was the devil.
Amazon recently released a portable digital book that you can download literature onto. I don’t think it will fly. If they are anything like me, people who read books like books. I can’t read on a computer screen at length. The people who do get their written words electronically probably don’t read anything as long as a book, right?
Lately I’ve been wondering what I’ll be like as an old man. My grandkids (and I’ll likely be very old before I have any) would roll their eyes and say, “He watches movies and reads magazines. He listens to Rage Against the Machine and The B-52s. He walks. And he still won’t get a USB port installed in his skull. Stubborn old geezer.” I think I’ll just tell the brats right off that I can’t relate and if they can’t accept that then they can go virtually fuck themselves. Damn whippersnappers.