The World According to Dave
Wednesday, January 15, 2014
by: David Osborn, Meissner Jacquet Investment Management Services

Section: News Roundup




On the topic of technology, have you ever noticed how obsolete terms or devices continue to be used in our everyday speech or lives? Sometimes it’s just hard to give up on something.
 
“Hang up the phone”: One doesn’t hang up a cell phone. You end a call or the call gets dropped and you end up cussing at it, but you don’t physically hang it up. You save that for the corded phone at your desk after yelling at a vendor or property manager, whichever the case may be.
 
“Roll up the window”: I actually rode in a car the other day that had roll up windows. I literally can’t think of the last time that I rode in a car with windows that you had to use a hand crank to work. Then again, I can’t remember what I had for breakfast yesterday, so maybe that’s not a valid remark. What’s the alternative for saying “Roll up the window”?  “Switch up the window”?  “Activate the window closed”?  Awkward.
 
“Type a letter”. Need I say more?
 
Ask a 20-Something what cc: means on an e-mail. Although they will know it means that the message is going to a secondary recipient, do they know it means “carbon copy”? Do they even SELL carbon paper anymore?
 
“Change the channel”. I made the mistake of using a twisting motion with my outstretched hand to mean to change the channel on the TV that my son was watching. He gave me a blank stare. He’s never seen a TV (or ANY electronic device for that matter) with dials. Somehow my action seemed more appropriate than using a charade motion of pressing the button (or several buttons!) on a remote.
 
 “Dial 555-1212”. Really? Dial? I guess somehow it slips off the tongue smoother than saying “Key 555-1212”.
 
Some of you know that I lived in a Third World country (or, as the natives prefer, “developing” country) for several years. While there, I would snicker at offices that still used fax machines. Now back in the USA, my current business card has a fax number listed on it. The shame is overwhelming. Can anybody tell me why we still have fax machines?
 
Coming across an ancient filmstrip projector (anybody born after the late 1960s won’t know what this is) at my children’s school, I casually told the principal on my way to the dumpster that I was tossing it out. I was flabbergasted when he told me not to since somebody could still use it. Several weeks later the school librarian showed me some equally ancient filmstrips that she had come across hidden in a dark closet. Curious, together we opened the little canisters that they were stored in. The strips crumbled in our fingers. The projector made a satisfying crash as it hit the side of the dumpster.
 
While typing this article I knocked over the open bottle of ink on my desk. I dialed my assistant for help, but she hung up on me.
 
Candy or a sour pickle: davido@meissnerjacquet.com