If nothing else living in these times
is rather schizophrenic. On one hand
we have modern technology which
magically transmits our thoughts and
images in a nano second. On the other
I'm in the process of writing hundreds
of Christmas cards which include a
jotted note to every recipient. And...
handwritten addresses - NO LABELS!
If it seems as if I'm trapped between
then and now, I am. That's because
part of me doesn't trust all of the new
fangled gadgets. But should I?!
Here today, gone tomorrow
Yesterday I had trouble logging onto my
email. Throughout the day service was
intermittent at best. However early this
morning I figured out what was wrong.
Not quite finished with my first cup of
coffee, I hit my trusty link to my in-box.
Immediately I was informed that there
was a new link to my e-mail. Upon my
clicking upon said new connection - I
was sent to an entirely new e-mail format.
Awkwardly I adjusted to it's cyber changes.
However... I soon noticed that ALL of my
folders and their contents were GONE.
Yes friends, all of those treasured
e-mails with important information
no longer existed. While honestly,
I can't remember exactly what was
saved or why it was important, I'd
rather personally delete or save said
communiques. However, I wasn't
given that choice and now... I sort
off feel more than violated. That's
the problem with modern technology.
They lure us with promises of easy
convenience only to yank the virtual
rug out from under us!
Immediately I sent a plaintive plea to
customer service hoping they could
recover my missing missives. And to
their credit I received a note assuring
me that my folders have been saved
and will ultimately be restored. Yet
I can't help but wonder if go-forward
I should BACK UP EVERYTHING
ON PAPER. Of course, I'm certain
there is some way to safely protect
my information. Yet wouldn't such
an extra step defeat the theoretical
purpose of cyber storage? HELP!
Trash to treasure
If nothing else this crisis reminds one
that while seemingly "real" - anything
on the internet is temporal at best.
After my parents passed on they left
behind a rather substantial paper trail.
Sifting through the debris, I couldn't
help but be reminded of good and bad
times. While I didn't keep everything,
I retained the best to share with future
generations. Thus Howard and Ethel
will live on via their written words.
Yet some unknown geek could wipe
out my memories with one key stroke!
Danger Will Robinson
I'm certain that said omissions were not
purposeful. I doubt there's a secret plot
to eliminate my historical context. Plus
if I'm honest I was probably warned of
an upcoming shift several times via the
e-mail server's website and messages.
However given a plethora of junk mail
that daily fills my in-box, it's hard to
separate the wheat from the chaff. If
only the subject line had boldly read
"WARNING! Your past is about to be
deleted!" Maybe then I would have
opened their sesame. Was I too late?!
Hence I've learned a very hard lesson.
My realization is that you can't trust
anyone with anything that's important
to you. And that anything written on
the wind could be blown away. There
are too many unknown forces playing
a role in protecting or destroying your
legacy. So, if it's important enough to
save, then it's equality important that
one store it in a safe place. Maybe I
should rent a safety deposit box? Or
open a Swiss bank account? Anything
to avoid losing the little that I treasure!
What's old is new
Even if it makes me appear ancient,
I've come to the conclusion that not
everything new is for the better. It's
easy to be swept away by a tsunami
of change. However at some point
we each must take responsibility for
when, how, and where we all utilize
innovation. Frankly, even if I sound
like a fearful old fogey decrying the
dangers of electricity, some things
are not to be trusted. So live your life
the way you want to. Don't give into
pressure. Unless it works for you...