Lisa Ricard Claro – Author

Romance is good for your heart!

The Blessings of Instant Connection: Thanks, Technology!

Posted on Oct 25, 2017 by Lisa Ricard Claro   18 Comments | Posted in The Naked Truth

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If you’re “of a certain age,” like me—“of a certain age” is so much more pleasant than “old bagger,” isn’t it?—have you ever thought about how your life might be different if you grew up with today’s technology?

When my husband and I moved from Nevada to Georgia in 1985, my daily chats with my mother screeched to a halt. There weren’t cell phones in every pocket back then. There was no e-mail, no Facebook, no Twitter, no Instagram. Prodigy wasn’t available yet, and there was certainly no option to Skype. There were, however, ridiculously high costs for long distance calls. For a young married couple trying to make ends meet, long distance charges were, unfortunately, one of the few monthly bills we could control. We couldn’t do without electricity or water; couldn’t opt out of food, formula, diapers, or daycare. Cutting down on those long distance calls was a monetary necessity. The result was that we didn’t call our parents even half as much as we wished. I look back and it hurts my heart that I missed out on the benefit our kids now enjoy: instant connection.

A call to my parents took serious planning. We were in different time zones, and three hours is a stumbling block. Calling during the least expensive hours (after 7 p.m. during the week or on Saturdays and Sundays) was a must, but between work schedules and weekend to-do lists, theirs and ours—especially with our three young kids at home and the accompanying activities—we missed each other more often than not and heard each other’s voices most frequently from the answer machine: “Just called to say hi. Sorry we missed you. We’ll try again this weekend. Love you, bye!” And by the time we chatted, the exciting thing I couldn’t wait to tell them was days or sometimes even weeks old and no longer so exciting.

By contrast, my kids are in frequent contact. My daughters call and speak to me every day, sometimes multiple times a day. We share texts and Facebook tags. Technology has made it easy to “reach out and touch someone” with little more than a thought, no planning required.

Just for fun, I hunted down a few old telephone commercials. See if you remember any of these:

What piece of technology do you most regret not having when you were a younger? How would having it have changed your life?

See you next week for more of the Naked Truth. Until then, have a great week!

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18 Responses to "The Blessings of Instant Connection: Thanks, Technology!"

  1. Comment by Meryl
    October 25, 2017 at 11:43 am  

    I remember people yelling into the phone because, since the call was long distance, the only way to be heard was to talk very loud. A GPS would have saved lots of arguments, first between my parents and years later between hub and I)

    • Comment by Lisa Ricard Claro
      November 1, 2017 at 8:26 am  

      Haha, yes, I remember the hollering. My kids have accused me of doing the same with my cell phone. I blame the gray hair. lol

  2. Comment by Karen Lange
    October 25, 2017 at 4:03 pm  

    Ha – this is timely. Am in the midst of a three way group text with my sisters. We’re discussing important and not so important items. 🙂

    • Comment by Karen Lange
      October 25, 2017 at 4:06 pm  

      P.S. Have a great week! 🙂

      • Comment by Lisa Ricard Claro
        November 1, 2017 at 8:27 am  

        You too!

    • Comment by Lisa Ricard Claro
      November 1, 2017 at 8:27 am  

      Those group texts are a mixed blessing. Sometimes I love ’em, and sometimes, well . . . I mute ’em!

  3. Comment by Theresa Sanders
    October 25, 2017 at 5:16 pm  

    I smiled at the reference to the answering machine, Lisa, because I remember days when we didn’t even have those (eek — now that’s old!). Love how you made us think of technology in a different light. We often hear it disparaged, but truly, I love the ability to text and have communicating at my fingertips. Thanks, as always, for an enjoyable post. 😊

    • Comment by Lisa Ricard Claro
      November 1, 2017 at 8:28 am  

      Glad you enjoyed it, Teri!

  4. Comment by Linda O'Connell
    October 25, 2017 at 6:48 pm  

    We came into the techno world in 2000. Bill surprised me with a cell phone. He hid it in my purse. I was at school for an evening performance in the kitchen in the dark, grabbing a bottle of juice for punch. My purse rang, I reached in grabbed the phone and flung it across the room, thinking it was a toy I had taken home from class. Thank goodness, it survived. Bill went white faced. What a memory. All of our kids have modern cell phones with great cameras. I still have an old phone, but it keeps me connected.

    • Comment by Lisa Ricard Claro
      November 1, 2017 at 8:31 am  

      Your stories are always great, and this one is no exception. I can just see you pitching that phone. lol I didn’t like cell phones when they first came out. I thought they were so rude. They still are, really. Most people answer them even in the midst of a face-to-face conversation with someone else. But I sure don’t want to give mine up!

  5. Comment by Pat Wahler
    October 26, 2017 at 9:14 am  

    I’d probably pick my cell phone. Every time I drive any distance alone, I’m so grateful for GPS telling me when to turn, and the security of knowing I have a way to call someone for help if I need it. How did I ever manage when my only choice would be finding a pay phone?

    • Comment by Lisa Ricard Claro
      November 1, 2017 at 8:32 am  

      Do pay phones even still exist? As to the GPS, I love that feature too, although my hub insists we always check a map first because our GPS has steered us wrong more than a few times—not with local directions, but when we’re in someplace unfamiliar.

  6. Comment by Stephanie
    October 26, 2017 at 10:33 am  

    I love, love, love being able to keep in touch immediately especially in case my thought disappears when I move on to my next task!

    Have to say that I am not sure I would have liked my parents to have the same options when I was young…lol!

    • Comment by Lisa Ricard Claro
      November 1, 2017 at 8:33 am  

      Haha! Me either!

  7. Comment by Cathy C. Hall
    October 26, 2017 at 11:26 am  

    Yep, my phone’s the bomb diggity but a word processor would’ve shaved YEARS off my life (I was–and still am–a lousy typist so correcting errors on a typewriter was a nightmare! And those sheets of carbon paper? SAVE ME NOW!!!)

    • Comment by Lisa Ricard Claro
      November 1, 2017 at 8:35 am  

      Oy. Carbon paper. I’d forgotten about that stuff, and now I’ll have nightmares. When I was doing the medical transcription work I always gave kudos to those that came before me and did not have the benefit of medical spell check or a backspace key. I can’t even imagine . . .

  8. Comment by ButtonsMom2003
    October 26, 2017 at 6:18 pm  

    I don’t think I can pick what piece of tech I would have liked most when I was younger as my career ended up being centered around computers and other technology.

    A cell phone would have been nice. While I always lived in the same city as my parents my then boyfriend/fiance/now hubby and I were separated back in 1972/73 when he was away at Georgia Tech. We were young and in love and had never been so far apart before. The crafty engineers in his dorm figured out how to rig the phone so he got his money back after he called me so phone calls were more frequent that we ever thought possible. The statute of limitations is up, right? 🙂

    • Comment by Lisa Ricard Claro
      November 1, 2017 at 8:35 am  

      Why does this story not surprise me? lol Love this!

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