Sunday, December 25, 2011

Thank You Technology

I saw this video clip the other day from Conan O'brien's Late Night talk show who was talking with comedian Louis C.K.  It's hilarious - all about how we are so use to all the technology around us that we have become complacent and unappreciative of the wonder that is technology.  

I will admit, I myself complain sometimes and wanted to take a moment to sit back and appreciate the amazing technology that makes my life better.  Here is a short list - my complaints and my thank yous.

1) Complaint: The never-ending emails, Skype/Adobe Connect/GoToMeetings online meetings that mean I work 10 hours or more some days and often on weekends. Why won't these people leave me alone?!

Why I am thankful: Because of these technologies, I have the benefit of working from home and can be with my family when not traveling, I can work odd hours.  I have the flexibility to fit work into my schedule and to work for a company I love and with people all around the country regardless of location.  Through the wonders of online meetings I am able to finish my doctorate studies in Virginia even though I live in Texas. I can connect at any time to people.

My daughter in college can email me the papers she is working on and the art pictures she has painted (yes, that's her oil painting for her 'anti-fur' campaign) so that I feel a part of her life all the time.  When I was in college I had to write letters or wait for the one phone call a week or break before my parents knew what was going on, so thank you technology for keeping me connected to my family, my colleagues, my friends, my schooling. 

2) Complaint: Texting - no one uses a phone.  My children don't answer the phone EVER. People are always distracted at dinners or meetings or just walking down the street - forgetting to pay attention to the live people they are actually with (I am guilty of this myself).

Why I am thankful: I am always able to connect with my children and husband via text.  They answer immediately. And they text me frequently with silly questions or news about their day.  When I travel I can talk to them at any time and share fun moments even when we are not together.  I have some of the best conversations with my kids through text so...I would not have my picture with John Corbett if not for my younger daughter's text telling me to "...get in there"...I did it for her.  And without texting, that moment of letting her know John was in the restaurant I was at would never have been possible and her funny comments that inspired me to act would never have happened either.  And now, it's a fun story we share even though we were miles apart.

I live far away from many of my closest friends and through text, I find I share relevant moments, quick hellos, pictures, and just 'I miss you's' a lot more because it is so easy, efficient, and accessible.  So...thank you texting for keeping me connected to those I love on a consistent basis.  Short messages are better than no messages at all.  I can get hold of a friend or a child in a matter of minutes versus days or weeks and that is a blessing.

3) Complaint: Flying and traveling all the time.  Going through security, waiting in airports, no internet at the airports.

Why I am thankful: I get to fly all over the country and meet new people and see new places. And, as Louis C.K. said:  "I am flying in the sky.  Like a bird."  That's amazing and something that just puts it all in perspective, doesn't it?

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