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Column

You just have to get the feel for it

Editor's Note: This column was originally published Jan. 20, 2017

It's no secret ... Mick and I sometimes struggle with new technology.

It took a lot of convincing several years ago to get my hubs on board with the whole 'smart phone' thing. He was perfectly fine with his flip phone and couldn't see any purpose for upgrading to something different.

"I only need a phone to make phone calls ... I'll never use the internet on it ... It's just an expense we don't need." He was adamant.

It didn't take him long to appreciate and master the multitude of tasks he could accomplish with just a touch on his newly acquired smart phone.

The tool I find most useful on my smart phone is the calendar. Since Mick and I work such vastly different schedules (mine being much more predictable than his), the only way to keep up with each others lives can at times be our calendars.

We color code everything. All of his entries and appointments are in red; mine are in lavender; Carson puts his entries in blue; and when my mom was living, we kept her appointments in green. As the days of the month would wear on, my calendar ended up looking like a basket of confetti exploded on it.

So anyway...

Mick received a Kindle Fire for Christmas.

The look on his face when he opened it was similar to that of a first time father looking at his new baby — I'm super excited, but what do I do with it?

Since it was gifted to him by our daughter, Avery, she was assigned the task of getting her dad acquainted with the new device, because, let's be honest, I'm not the best at explaining things when it comes to stuff like that. I don't actually know how these things work, but by trial and error, I fumble around until I get the the results I think I need. Make sense?

The two of them set up his email. They set up an Amazon account, because he does like finding good deals and seeing the Fed Ex truck pull in the drive to deliver his purchases. They downloaded a few apps he thought might come in handy.

In theory, we figured this would be a smooth transition for her dad, since he has become quite astute at making use of his smart phone for things like email, camera, keeping up to date on NASCAR, The Weather Channel, his calendar, television news stations and even a ghost finder — don't ask.

What we didn't count on was his uncompromising belief someone is changing the sensitivity of the touch screen on his Kindle Fire ... and strangely enough, I get the impression he thinks it's me. We keep trying to tell him, it just takes time to get the feel for a new device, but his patience is wearing thin.

I guess I can relate though. I remember rolling backwards at stop signs on a lot of hills in every vehicle I drove with a manual transmission while I was trying to get the "feel" for the clutch.

Contact Dana King at dking@shawmedia.com

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