The Stories We’ll Tell Our Grandchildren


Technological advances have a way of creeping up on you. It’s not until you begin reminiscing about “Ya know…when I was your age,” that you begin to realize how old you sound to people just 10 years younger than you are. I can only imagine how I’m going to sound to my grandchildren when telling them about the days of yore, and how things used to be:

  • “Our computers were so big that we had to carry them around in special bags that nothing else would fit in, and we were lucky if the batteries would last 3 hours without having to recharge. They were called ‘Laptops’”
  • “Before you could travel into space you had to be accepted and train at N.A.S.A. They would spin you around on some machine at a bazillion mph so they could check whether you’d pass out or blow chunks during the actual flight.”
  • “We would rent videos to watch and then we’d have to return them the next day or pay late fees.” “…videos are what we had before there were DVDs.  They were made of electromagnetic tape, and required a massive analogue machine to play them via our cathode ray tubes.” “…what do you mean, what’s a DVD?!!”
  • “Our cell phones used to allow us to do only one thing. Talk.”
  • “When we first began using Email, we were only able to send text – and we didn’t have any fancy schmancy formatting either! It was all PLAIN text.”
  • “Fossil Fuel based Petroleum Gas only cost $4 per gallon, and that was all our cars ran on.”
  • “When I first started connecting to the Internet, it was done over a plain old telephone line at 28.8Kbps. At that time we were pretty much limited to 2 choices, America Online or Compuserve.  Doing the math here, that means it would have taken you roughly a year to download a movie to your computer.”
  • “I had to drive; not fly, not port, but drive 30 min to/from work where I worked in an office with 1 inch walls separating me from my co-workers in what was called a ‘cubicle’.  You kids remember that classic horror film ‘Office Space’ I showed you?  Well…it’s not fiction!”
  • “Once they arrived in a ‘portable’ format, I could only talk on my cell phone for about 700 minutes a month, or I’d get charged for every extra minute that I used.”
  • “We used to use paper timesheets to do time tracking.”

I may be looked upon as a dinosaur someday by my progeny – but I’ll still be taking pride in my ability to whoop them at Asteroids, Missile Command, and Frogger..