Life as I know it has become manifested in the dim, blinking brake lights in the distance, having left me behind.
Itís this technology thing I still donít get.
Every time an IT geek tries to explain a procedure to me to post something online, or how to engage in the trolling of Twitter, I have this look on my face that goes beyond looking like a monkey doing a math problem. My eyes glaze over.
My jaw goes slack.
I think even the corner of my mouth draws up the cheek a little bit.
People look at me like Iíve just had a stroke.
I donít get technology. Not even remotely.
Iím the guy that hasnít just fallen off the learning curve, Iíve been left behind.
Iím the guy that put a wash cloth over the blinking clock display light on the VCR because I didnít know how to set the time.
The fact that Iím using a movie playing/recording device in a technology that hasnít been used by anyone under the age of 70 for the last 10 years should give you a good clue as to how lost I am.
I first displayed this lost expression back during my teenage years in high school when the Algebra teacher wrote an equation down on the blackboard - a blackboard is a prehistoric Tablet or iPad.
He wrote: A + B = C.
Then he turned to me and said, ďFind the value of C.Ē
I looked at him and said, ďMr. Clarke. I have a hard enough time spelling with these things, now you want me to add them?Ē
Itís been downhill from there ever since.
Iím one of those comfortable with thinking inside the box.
Lately itís been all about Twitter.
The explanation of Twitter when I asked, ďWhat is Twitter?Ē was pretty simple.
ďYour post on Twitter is what they call a ĎTweet.í
ďPeople then follow you and you follow them and you highlight your tweets with a hashtag (#).Ē
And there I was thinking A + B = C all over again, just like in school.
Iím not a bird, Iím a human being.
People follow you and you follow them.
Iím trying to imagine getting behind someone that doesnít want to be in front. Weíd be walking around in circles trying to get at each otherís backs.
Itís a lot like dancing, but nobodyís going anywhere.
Then I looked at what theyíre calling a hashtag (#).
When I was a kid I used to play tic-tac-toe on those things. Seeing this hashtag makes me want to draw up some Xís and Oís.
They even had a TV show with this thing. The hashtag was famous with Hollywood Squares long before it dominated Twitter.
The problem I see with Twitter is the manifestation of a common problem with America today.
Everybody talks yet nobody listens.
Everybody posts on Twitter but nobody replies.
Itís like politics, talk shows and even conversations on the street.
They look at you with this faraway glaze on their face. Theyíre counting down, waiting for you to pause because they know you have to stop and take a breath eventually.
And as soon as you do, they pounce on your conversation thread like a Ninja warrior and go off on their own thought tangent.
No one listens.
Theyíre just waiting on their turn to speak.
Pretty soon weíll all be sitting alone in our living rooms, staring into our communications devices and talking to no one and everyone, waiting for the reply that never comes.
I donít even watch TV anymore.
I watch the screen on my laptop.
Hey, I wonder whatís on You Tube tonight?