I marveled last week that my newest of the newest of phones — a very high-learning-curve Palm Treo thingie that takes pictures, has blue teeth, sends and receives e-mails and which I believe, with the right attachment, will mix up a strawberry smoothie — is certainly more technologically advanced than most of the craft that have carried men into space. Unfortunately, it’s so advanced I can barely figure out how to use it, and what used to be very simple, such as using a voice command, now seems to require me to hit several buttons in perfect timing before it will ask me if I really meant what I just said. I also find the keyboard absolutely impossible, even though I was very good with the Blackberry keyboard.
Our cars are highly intelligent, too. For instance, they have both been recently paid off, a fact of which they are apparently well aware, as they have launched a campaign for all that monthly payment money and more to go into obscene amounts of suddenly needed maintenance. Tires! Tires for everyone! And brakes! And brake calipers! And rototillers! Freebles! Macerators! Anything we saved on monthlies has completely gone out the window lately. Does anyone else remember when tires lasted for years and years? I’ve just changed out tires on both vehicles that didn’t last 30,000 miles.
And in a bit of a sympathetic strike action, my bike tires also got in on the deal, showing up massive sidewall cracks on the morning inspection. In fairness, they’ve given me many more miles than usual without getting slashed by broken bottles or permeated by nails, so I guess I was due. And in comparison, bike tires are free. Free, I tell you!
I’m back at work. Those first-week jitters, the ones that convince you that when you arrive you’re going to find there’s been some horrible miscommunication and you really don’t have a job at all, have passed. Now I’m just instantly under water with work, but that’s a good thing. After months and months of uncertainty followed by a couple of months of certainty that I needed to get the hell out of the old place, it feels great to be back on my feet again. And the plus side of a major commute? I get to hear a lot more Howard Stern than I used to.