Tag Archives: technology

Mom Texting

Screen Shot 2014-11-06 at 11.10.31 AM

For a mom with high digital engagement, it always amazes me how much I suck at texting and IMing. Actually, I probably just suck at typing and it translates to those mediums.

Danny, my adult son, has moved home after college and commutes to the city. His schedule changes as he spends nights in the city often. Wanting to plan for dinner, I usually text him during the day to get his status for that night.

The beauty of my relationship with my kids? They have inherited the appreciation for the absurd. Second gen MFTA*, if you will.

Do you think I could start #pimpmom trending?

mfta moment

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Filed under absurdities, advice to my son, conversations, danny, humor, parenting, technolgy

Siri humor

manIt would appear Siri is slightly hard of hearing. Or at least MY Siri is. She never understands what I am asking for.

The other day I needed the phone number for my favorite doctor on the face of the earth, Dr. Samuel J. Mann. Since he pretty much saved – maybe not my life, but surely the quality of it – I considered him THE Man.

Apparently Siri does not. In fact this was all she could come up with:

“I don’t understand ‘Man’.”

Which stopped me for a moment. You know Siri, I can relate. I don’t really understand man either.



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Filed under absurdities, health, humor, siri, technology

Video on Instagram… Vinekiller?

video for instagram

Well, well, well. Bless their little monopolistic hearts, facebook has just blown up Vine with video for instagram. And as much as I want to say it sucks… I can’t.

Quick run-through:

  • iOS and Android – Good move but I personally don’t care. But it is huge.
  • 15 seconds vs 6 – Don’t care that much, this is like bar mitzvah videos to me, sometimes less is more. Brands will love it. Little 15 second spots all over town… great opp.
  • Editing – This is big. Not sure why it is not in their bullet screen above; this is a big feature. The Vine purists will say that capturing it in one take is the artform – it keeps it fresh, it keeps it real. I get that, but really? Bullshit, everyone likes to edit.
  • 13 custom filters – Yum and they had to do it. And filters by frame can be beautiful, or really tacky depending whose hands they are in like anything else. I admit I love filters but as an artist I am in that crowd that wears the #nofilter hashtag proudly whenever I can. Because, you know, ‘I went to art school, yo.” (and yes, I am way to old too say ‘yo’)
  • Cover frame – lovely, I like that I can pick the frame for the feed. And brands… this is huge for you.
  • Cinema – OMG, I actually can’t say anything bad about stabilization. (Seriously, who doesn’t aspire to stability? What? That is not what it means?) There is no need to take a Dramamine when watching these vids, they are crisp and beautiful (with only a moderate amount of drinking while shooting, I am assuming).

I am still a huge fan of looping and think it is what makes Vine so cool when used correctly, so I am not sure not including it was wise. But I am not sure if Vine will survive this. On the other hand, Vine is the new frontier and the younguns’ are getting sick of the facebook clutter.

What are your thoughts?


Filed under carry a camera, communities, current events, design, facebook, home video, photography, product reviews, technology

We do breakdowns in a big way

Apparently the mechanical things in my life did not get the memo that the world did not end this week. Here is a little overview of what has been going on here since Monday.

1. Fax machine rings but the line defaults to static and will not connect.

2. Line 2 (biz line) becomes pure static when line 1 rings… only at certain times of the day. Apparently the phones were jealous of the fax getting all the attention. (as the child psychologists used to tell us ‘negative attention is still attention’

3. My time capsule decided to stop accepting my back ups on Monday. Brought it to the genius bar… geniuses could not revive it. Had to buy a knew one only to find out I left my wallet home. Back home, got wallet, back home again… time capsule will not connect to the internet. Half hour with internet provider tech help (nice guy), another half hour with apple tech help (another nice guy) and up and running. Time capsule would not accept back-ups – isn’t this where I started off with $300 more in my pocket? Eventually got that going – this was at 3:00 when I began my days work.

Are we having fun yet? Oh, not nearly enough!

4. Enter the picture above and the backstory. Danny went to work today to help Gary out. Such a nice boy – oh, and he was being well paid. Phone rings around 6:30. ” Mom, the car just died in the middle lane of the LIE.” Oooooo, that’s NOT good. After stressing under no circumstances should he get out of the car, I called AAA to find out he is not on the account. Pay $25, set up the highway patrol and a tow and meet him at the gas station.

Could they have found a bigger truck?

5. Oh, how could I forget… as I was leaving I forgot something in the house and stopped the garage door in mid close position… where it decided to remain. That’s right, you can find me at home tomorrow waiting for the call from the mechanic for the car and the repair guy for the garage door opener.


Filed under humor

Time to Cry Tuesday – Checking Out

I admit it. I am a connection junkie. I have a blackberry, a blog, accounts on facebook, foursquare, twitter and countless other ridiculous places I won’t admit. I post, share, ponder, like, friend, tweet, IM, BBM, text, and in my retro way I am known to send an occasional traditional snail mail thank-you note when old-fashioned sincerity is in order.

But this weekend I worked pretty hard at checking out. Nestled comfortably in the heart of the 6 million acre Adirondack Park, I stayed in a sleepy little town called… no, not Petticoat Junction. But pretty damn close. It is called North Creek. And it is a bustling metropolis compared to the town we were there to really visit, which is called Minerva.

Minerva… 12851. 28N. Say those three things to anyone who has been lucky enough to spend their summers at the sleep away camps in that town and a glazed look will come over their eyes. The air smells so sweet, the sky is that extra shade of blue, the lake tastes like nothing on this earth. The stillness of its mornings and the majesty of its sunsets are amongst the most beautiful experiences on earth.

But the true gift of this little jewel on earth is found in its lack of cell service. Yes, you read that correctly. I was thrilled to be technically untethered for a few days. And although North Creek prides itself in its relatively new hot spots, I can honestly say I tried my best to keep away from them as much as possible while I was in town. Sure I threw up some shots on facebook and even checked in on foursquare once just to see if there were venues that were listed, but for the most part…

I checked out.

And kids, I have to tell you, it didn’t suck. Somehow being there and letting go made me remember who I am on some level. Or perhaps it was who I want to be.


Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at 50-Something Moms Blog. For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

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Filed under camp, facebook, technology, Time to Cry Tuesdays, twitter, vacation

When Twitter is Down

So it happened tonight. To the dismay of those of us who use it as drug of choice/best time suck of all time the world’s most sophisticated social media types, twitter was so down that we were not even getting that cute little fail whale graphic. How did I find out? On Facebook, of course. The other place where online junkies get their fix favorite network of choice.

My guess was that since the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) is going on right now all the geekiest of geeks most sophisticated technology types were jamming twitter and causing it to sporadically fail.

I did a quick Google search to find out what was up and came across my new favorite site. It is called whentwitterisdown.com and every time you refresh the screen you get a new message. It is kind of like web 2.0s version of the magic 8 ball with an attitude.

Here are some of my faves:

I love the last one. And for the record, I don’t have a cat!

Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at 50-Something Moms Blog. For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

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Filed under absurdities, communities, conversations, current events, humor, searches, social media, technology

Verizon Rocks

Seriously, you don’t hear that often, right? Always complaining about not getting what you need from giant Telecom? Well I would like to personally thank Veronica at Verizon customer service (no joke, I wonder if all the CS peops are alliterations), who felt my mom pain and allowed us an early upgrade on my daughter’s blackberry to an international Tour so she can BBM us from her semester abroad.

When does this happen? Um, hardly ever. For me anyway. It’s usually all sorts of fighting and carrying on to not get what you need. Thankfully Verizon recognized my family’s superior status as a quality customer and showed us some mercy. Either that or poor Veronica simply felt bad for me. Big Telecom with a personal touch, how lovely.

For those unfamiliar, BBM is Blackberry Messenger. This is like texting but it is internet-based and you do not pay per message. To translate that into dollars and cents, international texts, are 99 cents each, national are 54 cents. Let’s be conservative and assume she would only text the boyfriend three times a day (unlikely), her other assorted friends that she is traveling with 5 times a day, and us, well probably once a week or when there was a problem. That would be around $818 for the five months she is away. Yeh, crazy right? And those were conservative estimates.

These few little comments could have helped me get what we needed:

  1. Veronica, are you a mom? Ok, well imagine your daughter being in a foriegn country and not being able to stay in touch.
  2. You know Veronica, I am a rabid Apple user. I want an iphone more than anything but I won’t ever leave Verizon.
  3. What? You need to ask your supervisor? Oh, is she a mom? Tell her as a mom I would really appreciate her consideration on an early upgrade to help my family out.
  4. And my favorite of all times which really made her happy: Veronica, YOU ROCK MY WORLD!

The moral of this story? If you are persistent, personable and play on the mommy heartstrings you can usually move mountains. But you all new that already!

    Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at 50-Something Moms Blog. For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

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    Filed under college, Jana, moms, technology, travel

    All thumbs

    Texting, or BBMing (blackberry messenger texting) is the way many of us communicate these days. It is not only the kids that converse this way, now many adults do as well. The keyboard-based phones have revolutionized the speed in which we can now get our message out. Back in the day of traditional cell phones (jeez, that does sound ridiculous) we were forced to spell things painstakingly with triple keystrokes to get the correct letters out. The full keyboards have eliminated that awkwardness and helped us to type out error free, coherent messages.

    Well, most of us.

    Every crowd has one. The person who loves to converse in BBM and does so regularly. That person is sensitive, completely in touch, a responsible friend and the worst damn thumb typist on the face of the earth. Many try to understand her messages but few can decode the nonsense that rolls off her fingertips and out into the BBMosphere. I have gotten pretty good at looking at the letters on the keyboard next to the ones that have been typed to try to decipher her messages.

    Oh, honey, you know who you are, and so do all your friends. But we love you just the same.

    Full disclosure, I asked permission to write this and she is a damn good sport.

    To give you an example of how funny things can with a friend like this, here are a few examples that happened during a not so funny time in her life this week.

    First, she bbmd her husband who was picking up her daughter at college with an urgent message. He looked at it. Looked at it again. Then handed it to his daughter and said, “Can you tell what she is trying to say here.” The daughter’s response was, “Hmmm, there really is no way to tell.”

    Later that day she sent me a message about her son having to have some unpleasant test while in the emergency room. Here was our exact conversation:

    Me: Ew at 50. Ewwwwwww, kill me now at 14.

    Her: That’s what linda said

    Me: Who the hell is linda?

    Her: Long Nails

    Me: Linda long nails?

    Her: no I mean that is what he kinda said. my nails are long for typing

    Me: OMG, I thought the nurse giving him the test was named Linda and she had long nails.

    I am happy to report her son is now ok. But during the afternoon we did get to talk about ‘ibtestines’, i found out that ‘whabdoesnt kill u makes us stronger’ and she shared that nails were a mess because she had ‘missee her monicrd’.

    Yeh, well, better to be all thumbs than tongue tied, right?

    Wishing a speedy recovery to a 14 year old who is a reeeallly, reeeallly good sport!

    Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at 50-Something Moms Blog. For photo enthusiasts, visitLeaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

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    Filed under conversations, health, humor, technology

    Technical flu


    Forget about swine, I am suffering from something way worse. I’ve got me a bad case of the technical flu.

    Now, I bet you are thinking that I am going to blame this on Mercury being in Retrograde, but oddly enough, I believe that ended yesterday at 9AM. That would be a few short hours before my garage door opener decided to stop working. As abruptly as it stopped, it started again. The 5 hour flu? Maybe.

    Then my back up drive decided to freak out and time machine kept giving me error messages. After 2 hours and 3 levels of Apple tech, they deemed the time capsule ‘all messed up’ (I believe that is the tech terminology) and told me to erase the back up disk and start over. Yeh, well, I could have done that myself and saved 2 hours. But they were lovely people (all 3 levels of them) and I always feel a little better when it takes so long for them to figure things out because it validates why I could not do it out myself.

    So Cosmic Charlie, or whoever else is messing with my crap, could you leave me be already and go pick on someone who has not been so battered by circumstance in the past few days?

    Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at 50-Something Moms Blog. For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

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    Filed under absurdities, technology


    Danny: I can’t find my driver’s ed contract.

    Me: I will have the office fax me a new one.

    Danny: What would I do if you were technically challenged?

    Me: You won’t ever have to worry about that (and faxing would be more admin than tech)

    Danny: The printer is not working.

    Me: The chord probably  loose. Here you go.

    Danny: Thanks mom.

    Jana: (long distance) Mom! The track ball on my blackberry is broken.

    Me: Yeh, that happens to me sometimes, just jiggle it around a bit and it should work.

    Jana: No it’s really broken

    Me: Then bring it in to Verizon.

    Jana: Ughhhh! 

    two minutes later by Blackberry Messenger

    Jana: It’s fixed!

    Me: Must have been my voice on the phone.

    Add technojanitor to this mom’s job description.

    Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at 50-Something Moms Blog.

    For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

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    Filed under danny, Jana, moms