Monday, July 28, 2008

Look How Far I've Come

While my computer-genius hubby-to-be and I were dating, he once tried to explain what the Internet was. I really didn't get it.

You can't blame me; almost no one understood it back then, and the only people I knew who owned e-mail addresses were computer software students like my fiance.

Why in the world would I ever need to go online or have an e-mail address?

(That sentence now is pretty laughable. Hahaahaaaa! The internet is almost another appendage for me now.)

Honey sat me down in a BYU computer science lab and found a site across the ocean in Finland (he knew I had ties there, of course), and we looked up something on it. It kind of blew my mind that this computer was talking to one on another continent. (Okay, so that concept still blows my mind.) The process took a lot longer than it would today, since it consisted of that "beep-beep-beep-beep-WAAAAAH!" of dial-up.

"You can find almost anything on the Internet," honey told me. (How much truer that is today!)

"Like what?" I asked.

"Like . . . anything," he said.

"Like what?" I pressed, figuring he meant things that only scientists would understand or care about .

"Give me something to look up."

I still didn't get it, but I tried to do my part. "Okay. How about L. M. Montgomery."

(I know how shocked you all are that she's the first thing that popped into my head.)

What we found exactly, I don't remember, but I do recall seeing it and going, "Oh! I get it! So you can look up stuff! Cool!"

What can I say? I'm a slow learner.

I've since gone on to be very comfortable online. Probably too comfortable, judging by how much time I spend there. I've done research, "met" people via blogging, and found great writing support, among many, many other things. (Like avoiding holiday crowds. Yay for online shopping!)

Once, some time ago, hubby and I instant messaged while he was at work, and he was mighty impressed when I used an acronym like LOL. Yes, his wife had learned a few things. But it didn't stop there. Oh, no.

A few weeks ago I bought a jumbo box of Bagel Bites from Costco. (Okay, so I know they're atrocious health-wise. But it was part of maintaining my summer sanity. Deal with it.) The freezer was a bit too full, so I took the packets out of the box to help squeeze it all in so the door would close.

Usually when I do this, I make sure to rip off the heating instructions from the box or at least make a note with a Sharpie on how hot and how long to bake something. This time I neglected to do either. Whoops.

When I went to cook up a batch some time later, I grimaced. Dang. No instructions. I could probably guess, but I'm not the sharpest knife of the chef's drawer, and I didn't want to mess it up.

The solution came to me almost immediately.

I bet I can find the instructions online.

Seconds later, I was at my computer, searching for "Bagel Bites heating instructions."

Of course I found them.

I'm sure back in the Stone Age when we were dating, they wouldn't have been there. But searching online for such a thing wouldn't have crossed my mind, either.

The Internet and I . . . we've both come a long way, baby.

Scary when I'm relying on it for how long to cook dinner.


Alison Wonderland said...

I have a friend who doesn't have the internet. WHAT?!?!?! How do you live?! Do you at least have running water?! I can't even imagine that.

Melanie Jacobson said...

My husband is also a computer programmer. I thought he would drop to his knees and propose all over again last week when I learned how to use html tags to make italics in comment boxes. And he was even prouder when I used Wikipedia to figure out what a meme is. I even have a Wiki sound effect to accompany my use of the word "wiki" as a verb. (What's the average life span of a dollar bill? Why? Because I need to know for my story. Hm. I'm not sure. I think I'll Wiki it. I love you.)

Kimberly Vanderhorst said...

I discovered the internet in 1996.

Nearly flunked out of University because of it...

Don said...

Bagel Bites have instructions? Who knew?

My sweetie was a computer geek just like me, and we conducted half of our courtship using our email accounts This was even back before Senator Al invented the internets.

We printed the email on green lined paper using those printers that went "reeee-reeee-reeee" and clipped them into a binder, which we kept for years until...

Anonymous said...

you've come a long way baby!

i am such an email addict, i know i am. i did not resist temptation yesterday and i checked email on my PDA before i finished my church day.

i love being connected to my favorite people.

and i have sure loved having this blogging outlet to write my journal of sorts.

enjoy, kathleen

Karlene said...

What I love is being able to look up movie times at the theater instead of calling the phone number with the recorded message for hours because it's busy all the time. And if you don't know what a particular movie is about? Click! And you can find out all about it.

An Ordinary Mom said...

I remember learning about the Internet back in the mid 90's while at BYU ... it really boggled my mind how it worked. Now I take it for granted ... although I still don't know quite how it functions :) !!

Anonymous said...

Surprisingly, Bagel Bites has some protein in there! Can look it up online if you don't believe :)

Heather Moore said...

You should have asked me how long to cook Bagel Bites. My 13-year old has it down to a science :)

Yes, the internet is so awesome. I can email my dad when he's in the Middle East and still get answers to my questions, with no phone tag!

Julie Wright said...

I love the internet!!! Like you, I married a nerdy type man who knew what the internet was waaaaaaay back when no one did except people like him. I hated computers and technology in general. I wrote my first three books by hand on paper with real ink from real pens. (I still don't set my own alarm clock) But Baby, I can Google with the best of them!

Anonymous said...

i am such a movie buff (going to the movies). so agree! i love that how i never have to listen to the endless theater phone message again. i just click on the website and see what i want to know immediately. very convenient! very spoiled, kathleen

PS. getting rest :)

Elisa said...

I remember when I saw my first email. 1994.
My husband was emailing his father in Chicago, and I was baffled that this little box was going to send this message to his Dad. I kept asking him if he was sure he knew what he was doing.

I still ask him that, and am always pleasantly surprised that he does!

My husband thinks Google is just another word for God. Google all knowing--God all knowing.

I wish my prayers were answered as fast as Google answers my questions.

Anna Maria Junus said...

I remember in the early eighties when a friend was telling me that computers were cool and everyone would have one.

I thought he was weird.


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