Wasting Time

Recently, after a long period of reflection, I committed another event in my long history of dumb decisions. This one did not involve buying anything that one could ride around in, like sports cars, RV’s, motorcycles, or boats; rather, it is characteristic of our present fascination with All Things Electronic.

I have gone over to The Dark Side. Yes, I’ve partially forsaken the World of Android PC and succumbed to societal pressure to acquire an iPhone, the much ballyhooed status symbol of higher level intellectual pursuits. And not stopping there, I ordered a refurbished iMac desktop computer to go with it, and also with my iPad which I’ve been happily using for a couple of years.

After several months, I can say that I liked my Android smart phone better( I keep it plugged in unactivated next to my bed, it can still receive); I’m neutral toward the iMac until I have more experience with it; and I still place the iPad at “the top of the heap”. The latter is one of those stripped down versions that can’t be used as a phone, and I haven’t forked over the cash to make it useable in areas lacking wifi ; however, it’s great for resting it on my chest or against my raised legs when in bed to watch sporting events, movies on TCM, Amazon, or Netflix, or to text and email on the keyboard in the cover. I use it for printed communication more than on my various laptops and pc’s.

The iPhone has several drawbacks. The first is that when I’m on the phone and even activating the speaker due to my hearing issues, I frequently mute the call when I brush the mute icon with my ear. A second problem is the location of the speakers at the bottom edge; that’s where I normally hold a cell phone, and often cover them up with my hands. A third concern is that the shut down button is directly across from the volume control so that I frequently change the volume while accessing the shutdown mode. Yes, there are minor distractions, but irritating.

One of the reasons for having gone over to Apple was that everyone in my family is already there and raves about the “convenience” that what appears on one instrument is immediately sent to the others. I’ve found that to not be true in all cases, and it will be awhile before I have enough knowledge to figure out which stuff lends itself to such a transfer. It’s somewhat ironic that we had the very first Apple 2+ and later the 2e, each costing a robust $2000 and doing less than a Casio watch. I purchased them also for my school, and we had the first K-12 computer curriculum in our state, in 1980. My wife became almost obsessive about working on the computers, entering programs she’d written into contests and becoming a certified Apple repair person. We discovered those early games, like Asteroid, Pong, and our favorite Crossfire.

In the mid-80’s, she resumed her teaching career in a nearby district, one that was using PC’s instead of Apple, and she gradually went in that direction for a number of years until one of our sons sold her on the idea of going back to Mac. I had continued using Apple and learning PC, and was forced to be a Windows person due to the requirements of various new jobs I took over the years. I even discarded my Mac Classic, one of the early Macs that had the 4 inch screen and was very compact. I had used it to begin emailing, using the now defunct  AOL and learning patience transmitted to users via the DSL line. It is a good resource as a tool for punishing students, making them go to DSL until they behave, which usually resolves quickly!

I haven’t yet figured out if I’m truly at a crossroads, or on a dual expressway continuing to use both. Right now, I’m on my 24” all-in-one ASUS pc, but later in the evening will be back on the iPad. I need guidance, I don’t really consider myself competent on either system!

And in the meantime, I shall continue my present tussling with a series of –ologists. In the past two weeks I’ve seen a dermatologist (skin biopsies were benign), gastroenterologists (no colon cancer), urologist (no prostate cancer), cardiologist (echo cardiogram next week), and opthamologist (preliminary meeting to decide on cataract surgery sometime this spring). My audiologist wants me to call for an update exam, after I finish all the other folks. Somehow, my dentist slipped in long enough to extract a back tooth; he’s obviously a nonologist. At some point I have to see my neurologist about the increasing neuropathy in my feet and legs, and the carpal tunnel in both forearms. The best thing about all of this is that I’ve been letting my sparse hair grow, and my cosmetologist is struggling to make me beautiful again!

If she’s successful, I can look forward to more of my travels. Next week, after the echo-c, I’m headed to Frisco, Texas, to drop off birthday presents for my wee grandkids, to be ages 2 and 4. In early March, it’s to Arizona to again work in the Founders’ Cup LPGA golf tournament, and visit friends in Green Valley, Tucson, Sedona, Phoenix, and Prescott. Late April’s plan is to attend an alumni luncheon in KC, then proceed on to Charlotte, NC, to work in the Wells Fargo Championship for the sixth time, and visit my wife, our son and his family. And on the Seventh Day, I’ll rest.

Always Be Happy                                                                                                                                       To Our Youth

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