I have become resistant to change. I may find this scarier than change itself.
I remember my grandparents getting stuck in their ways. One granddad refused to wear pants with pleats. You could not find a nonpleated pair in town so he had his suits hand tailored.
I’m the opposite. I love my pleats! They’re roomy and comfortable. I can fit my phone, a kid’s phone, wallet, business cards, keys and my glasses in orifices around the circumference of my hips and still have room to spare. Nonpleats are in and yet, I hate ‘em.
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My other granddad didn’t want to watch anything on TV but Andy Griffith and I Love Lucy reruns. My grandmother would enter the room and yell, “Spurgeon! Turn the channel. The kids don’t want to see that junk!”
“Oh Ivy, they love it!”
It wasn’t that bad, but I wouldn’t say we loved it. I too find a Seinfeld episode much more invigorating than Dog with a Blog, my youngest kid’s favorite.
But it wasn’t TV last week that let me know I was stuck. It was my recurring fear of technological updates.
I received an email from Bart, he takes care of all mobile phones at the Y. His message was upbeat: New iPhones have arrived! Come by my office to pick yours up!
As others jumped from their desks to rush his office, I reached for my trashcan. A wave of nausea came over me.
There are people who spend nights in tents for the glory of owning a new technological apparatus. For me, this announcement means weeks, perhaps even months, of strife: new tool bars, Candy Crush and Taylor Swift mysteriously missing, my Outlook calendar organized in list fashion versus boxed calendar day. It was almost more than I could take.
I don’t want a new phone. I just want my old one to hold a charge for more than three hours.
At 4 PM I meandered to Barts’s side of the building. I paced in front of the IT department’s door. A fellow employee popped out from the office kitchen.
“Bruce, you need something?”
“It’s the phone isn’t it?”
My brow furrowed, I confessed: “I’m frightened. You know what happened the last time we had an upgrade.”
“You’ve got to let that go. We were able to recover most of the data on the server.”
He put his arm around my shoulder and guided me inside.
Bart was on his way out but slowly walked through the steps to back up my old information in the clouds. Apparently I was not utilizing this atmospheric support.
I took my old dandy back to my desk and plugged it into my computer. I clicked on iTunes and began the process of updating my 5S. I’d never done that before. At some point it asked me to enter a password. I punched in four numbers that were meaningful to me. I thought I was perhaps unlocking something that had been set up before.
When I was finished, I unplugged my 5 ready to access it for the last time. What I realized was that I had actually locked myself out.
I panicked. Oh Lord, please help me.
I was flustered. I went to YouTube and clicked on a video entitled Removing a Password from your iPhone 5.
I clicked play and began to follow the instructions of the hipster who was narrating the show.
“Plug your iPhone up to your computer.”
“Press the power button at the top of your phone while also pressing the control button at the bottom of your phone.”
I listened intently doing exactly as he instructed.
My phone was responding just as the one on the screen.
About half way through his demo, he said, “This will fully clear all contents from your phone, and you’ll be ready to start from scratch.”
Say what, say what? From scratch? I don’t want to start from scratch. I’m not even in the clouds yet!
And like that, all of my contents – my songs and my photos, my apps and my Outlook, the history of text messages, and all my saved messages were gone – for good. I felt like I’d been sucker punched.
Sometimes you get to an age that Andy Griffith is OK. I like pleats. Seinfeld is funny. And a working phone, with all of your stuff, is sometimes more appealing than a new one.
Purchase Bruce’s Book Laughter, Tears and Braids: Amazon or Quail Ridge Books in Raleigh