The 21st Century Foxes

I sometimes wonder what my grandparents would think if they could pop in on 2012? So much of what we do in life would be foreign to them.

We are a thoroughly modern family. Though Stef is separated by 2,883 miles&#185 we are tight. She and Helaine speak multiple times every day. When not on the phone we connect via IM or texting.

We got a text message from her last night. A friend, a Vancouver Canucks fan, invited Stef to see the Canucks play the LA Kings.

She sent us the photo you see on the left. Nice seats. They were VIP seats. I mention that though I have to clue what that actually means or entails.

Here’s my theory about LA. There is only one type of seat: VIP. Everyone else in the arena is an extra.

After a while another text from Stef telling us Gene Simmons and Shannon Tweed were a few rows ahead of her.

Helaine follows the Simmons family on Twitter. Sure enough Shannon Tweed had tweeted a photo from the game. I forwarded it to Stef a few rows back.

For Stef being in California does not the change communications dynamic with her family.

There was a time I could be out-of-touch for days or weeks at a time. That ship’s sailed.

I sometimes wonder what my grandparents would think if they could pop in on 2012? So much of what we do in life would be foreign to them. Cellphones, computers, GPS, immense flat screen TVs–none of those existed. Coast-to-coast phone calls over landlines were expensive!

We live a life they couldn’t have dreamed of.

It really feels we’re a lot closer than 2,883 miles.

&#185 – 2,883 miles is Google’s estimate. They clock the trip at one day twenty three hours.

18 thoughts on “The 21st Century Foxes”

  1. I will never forget when Facebook first came out and my son set me up on it. A few weeks later I called his cell phone while he was at college north of Boston. He said, “Mom, can you just write to me on Facebook?” But while he was at South Kent School, a boarding school, we did homework on the phone, our cell phones.

  2. Geoff,

    I recently outfitted my daughter with iPad 2. Her and her husband have them. I do also. Never being able to see my twin grandchildren open their gifts on the holiday, we set them up via Facetime and I was able to see the entire event unfold before my eyes. Our entire family has iPad 2 and they are used daily to communicate via video Facetime to eachother.

    I never thought that a tech device would bridge the gap in staying close but it actually does.

    The new iphone 4s will do the same. Or Fring on an Android device.

    Oh and did I mention we are only 25 miles apart? Sad but yes, I believe I would be missing out on so many of the grand kids home events if I did not have this device or similar to stay in touch. Did I mention this is on top of the Facetime communication?

    -Linda

  3. I was texting my sister in Australia last night. Still amazes me that we can do that from around the globe. Her clients don’t even know she’s away until March because all her email, calls, etc are sent instantly to her devices. It really is an anytime, anywhere society we live in.

  4. Watched my 7 month old grandson take off crawling last night for the first time on FaceTime. Would have missed it otherwise.

  5. My kids used to call me on their cell phones while walking to classes on their respective college campuses. No waiting for a dorm pay phone on a Sunday night – a practice older friends described.

    Also, I spent an entire journalism career without faxes, cell phones, PCs, etc. At the Register-Courier in the 70s, some suburban copy came in on buses. Reporters had to drive places to get information. If you had a beat, you physically went there every day, sometimes multiple times a day.

  6. I meant to say in my previous post ‘On top of Facebook!’ Too early in the am and the mind does not sync with the keystrokes sometimes!

  7. If we had the technology when I was growing up in the 70s-80s I never would have gotten away with as much as I did. With that in mind, even though my son and I share that technology now, I give him his space. I let him friend me on Facebook and whatever I see, I make no comment on Facebook or in person!
    Texting was wonderful when he first went to college and I could ask questions without feeling intrusive – I think it actually made us closer.

  8. Thirty years ago this week I arrived in Liberia West Africa in the Peace Corps. I had to “book” a call to let my family know that I was there safely. Then I had 4 minutes to tell them all I needed to say, and the call was collect! Then I made 2 other calls in 2 years, letters had to suffice. Now there are cell phones in the jungle of West Africa and with computer connections and solar chargers, there is communication. Your Grandparents, and mine, would be stunned, as we will be when in our 80’s!
    Love the posts Geoff!

  9. I remember making the weekly pay phone call home from college – sometimes when I wanted privacy I’d go a couple of blocks away to use a phone booth, rather than the hall phone in my dorm. Very different from the constant communication now – but I wonder if we had to be more self-sufficient in those days – we had to fight our own battles and learn how to cope. I teach grad-level students now – we had one mom call the dean of students from CA on a weekend to say her daughter was cold studying in the library. No helicopter-parenting 40 years ago!

  10. My grandmother would have totally hated all this technology. When I was a child and she came to visit, she would immediately turn off her hearing aid when we turned on the television. She hated television and would read or knit when it was on.

  11. Geoff, do you ever Skype with Steph? My daughter is out in CA also, and we Skype with her weekly. It feels like she is across the table when we do. Great thing….this technology today!!! ­čÖé

  12. Love the facetime. Tyler was able to get a virtual tour of Campus when our oldest nephew left for college this year. Amazing what technology has brought us. Though I sometimes wonder if we are to dependent.

    Ty was excited that Steph saw Gene Simmons and the lovely Shannon. He follows the show & is waiting and hoping to see Kiss in concert.

    Tell Steph GO RANGERS & GO GIANTS! Sorry we missed her when she was home. To a rockin New Year. Stay Safe.

  13. When my mother’s 4th great grandchild was born in Portland Oregon in October of 2009, his father sent me a photo by his iphone which I printed and took to her house 3 miles away within 12 hours of his birth. She was beyond thrilled to see a photo so quickly! Fast forward to today, when I was treated to a Skype tour of my daughter’s new apartment in Columbus Ohio! Love the technology as well as an old fashioned letter.

  14. I remember back to the ’50s when my grandfather would call from Brooklyn, we lived in Danbury, and dad wpould tell the operator to please reverse the charges. LOL then there woule be the argument over who would pay for the call. I also remember my grandpa watching the Yankees play ball on his 15 inche black and white TV while sitting two feet from the scteen in his rocker. I think if I remember correctly there were two cameras. One behind the catcher and one for the field itself. Grandpa would have loved the electronic advances we have today.

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