When my son suggested creating a blogging site called “octogenarian,” I was not familiar with “blogging” and unsure what the term octogenarian meant. If someone had asked me, I probably would have said it’s someone born in October, as opposed to a person in his or her eighties or an otherwise “old” person.
I had 4 grandparents who lived well past 80 years old and my mother in her nineties, but never heard them referred to as Octogenarians. And if I had called them that, they probably would think that’s cause to have my mouth washed out.
But the world of computers has created a completely new language. When I heard the word blog, I thought it was in reference to the Rorschach test, a psychiatric term meaning the interpretation of inkblot designs spattered on a sheet of paper.
About 7 years ago, I decided I wanted to sell on the internet and announced to my children that I was buying a computer. They immediately thought I was one pancake short of the stack, and said, “Oh mother don’t waste your money. You have trouble operating a can opener.” My response was that I heard 4-year-olds use computers so surely I can learn to use one. Unknown to me was the computer language and I failed to stop and realize children learn other languages rather quickly.
Anyways, I still bought a computer and didn’t even know how to turn it on. I had no idea what a mouse, hard drive and monitor was. Therefore, it was very difficult and frustrating for me to learn how to operate one, and I’m still not computer savvy and somewhat illiterate relative to terminology. There’s a certain truism to the saying, “it’s hard to teach an old dog new tricks.” But I had dogged determination.
I did hire a lady to come for a few days and instruct me on how to use it. I signed up on eBay and sold on eBay for 5 years. I shipped all over the world and at one point was declared a power seller. Now it’s difficult for me to impress my children with anything, but dare say they were impressed with that, which was a surprise to me. Nonetheless, I still struggle with anything that is electronic. It’s just not my cup of tea. But I love to write and am interested in anything creative.
Now I have a 3-year-old grandson who sits in my lap at the computer and knows what a monitor, hard drive and mouse is. And he loves clicking on the printer.
Once my son explained that blogging is sort of like writing a column and having readers respond with their remarks, I got excited and wanted to do it. So I hope I can write well enough to generate interest in others to dialog on ideas. I type with two fingers, my spelling and grammar may not be that of a fresh college grad, my eyesight is not what it used to be, and sometimes think my brain is on rewind. But one thing for is sure, I enjoy writing.
Getting older has its rewards and drawbacks, but I for one am not interested in the alternative at this stage in my life. I recall George Burns saying, “one could live past 100 if they did not fall in love with their bed.” And Adlai Stevens saying, in response to a lady who told him thinking Americans would vote for him, “lady I’m looking for a majority.” In this age, where so many older have Alzheimer’s and younger ones have autism, I’m grateful to be able to walk, talk, think and write.
I was amazed when I clicked on the word octogenarian this morning and found 11 pages, ranging from rock climbing, gun toting, body building to poetry. And the most hilarious was the one that said, “Anna Nicole beds down with an octogenarian for nothing.”
In this connection, I’m just hoping others will join me in blogging to learn, laugh and live. Or just come along for a wild ride.
Let Freedom Ring!