Kids these days

           My kids like to make fun of me because I can’t really work the TV remote. It’s not because I don’t know how, it’s just that they have pretty much taken over the device and I haven’t gotten to choose the show since 2005. I also volunteered in my daughter’s second grade class and she still to this day reminds me that she had to teach me how to work the Smart Board.
            These same children successfully reprogrammed my parent’s phones and solved technical issues on their other electronic devices.
            They think they’re pretty fancy. They think they’re pretty smart. They also think we’re pretty old and dumb and they have the right to laugh in our faces every time they have to show us how to do something trivial.
            But listen up, kids, you’re not as smart as you think you are. And today, a little magical device put you in your place.
            While trying to convince the kids that band is cool and that jazz band is even cooler, I went into the dark corners of the basement and dusted off a cassette tape of my senior year of band. (We were actually pretty amazing, if I do say so myself. Especially the saxophone section.) More amazing than actually finding the tape was finding a cassette player that still worked.
            I put the tape in, pressed play, and of course the wrong song was playing. I started pushing the rewind and fast-forward buttons and searched and searched for the song that featured yours truly on the bari sax on a song called “Four Brothers.”
            “How do you now when to stop it?”
            “It’s taking forever.”
            “How do you know when it’s at number four?” (It took at least a minute before she realized there was no number four on the cassette.)
            “This is like that one time in school we watched something on a DCR and the teacher had to rewind it and it took, like, 10 minutes.”
            Honey, that’s a VCR. And always, always be kind and rewind.
            Eventually I found the song I was looking for. On the other side of the tape. Which is something that completely blew their minds. The fact that you could actually flip the thing over and put it in upside down and hear an entirely different set of music? Incredible, these archaic methods of music! And I, your you-can’t-run-the-Smart-Board mother, am master of the cassette machine! I have the power of knowing which buttons to push and when to push them!
            So take that, kids these days. You think you’re all brainy and gifted and technologically advanced? Try recording your favorite song on the radio with that tape player. Hit stop and start and don’t get the commercial that plays afterwards.
            Then call your friend on a rotary dial phone to tell her about it.

Originally written 4.10.16


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