Oh the aged and technology

My mom recently retired. She decided to get an ADSL line installed to keep herself busy. But of course to convince her that the laptop can, actually, really stay set up all the time? Well that is another story! The instinct of the average “over sixty” something person is to cage up such things as lap tops, hiding them in elaborate hiding places, and only pulling the thing out after you have telephoned to let them know that you have sent them an e-mail.
I type these words with confidence as I know that my mother will never read them. The concept of something like a blog is completely alien to her.
She comes from a time when one didn’t air their dirty linen in public. I must admit that it would be nice if more Facebook users took that sentiment to heart!
In fact the idea of Facebook and Twitter are absolutely appalling to my mom. She is a lady, and she will never have a Facebook account!
However, not wanting her to completely waste her retirement (and her Internet cap) I am trying to encourage some gentle accounts. So today I set up a Pinterest account for her, and also a LinkedIn account. Being a professional minded person she immediately understood the value of a linked in account. An online CV? Great idea. But what about Pinterest? (No offence Indulgy and Instagram, but I thought this would be a good first step)
So I set up the account.
“You say I can use it to look for recipes?” she asks me.
“Yes mom, and ideas”
How do you teach someone who is terrified of their PC the joys of browsing through millions of images for beautiful things? That happy place that you go to when you are just cruising through a sea of inspiring and beautiful images? Things that interest and please you?
“Okay”, I tell her, “it’s like a digital pin board of pictures you like.”
“But what for? Why do you have it?” she wants to know.
Just, because.
In case you want to look for an idea that you want to try some time, or something that inspires you a little bit. Why not?! How do you explain this to someone?
Although she happily uses word, excel, Google even, and her E-mail for accounts and even online banking, my mom doesn’t understand the joy of web crawling through a digital wonderland, of cruising through articles and news feeds and following any tangent that grabs your attention. I think that it is something you are just part of or you are not.
I wonder what wondrous new things will have come about by the time that I retire? What my daughter will be trying to teach me to do? Or if those of us who are accustomed to the ever changing digital world will be able to keep up when we are older? I guess we will have to wait and see.
For all that though, I must admit, with my mom around you don’t really need Google. She really does know how to do everything!

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