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Friday, January 25, 2019

I Don’t Believe It!

I Don’t Believe It!
Years ago, I was recording my 85 YO mom playing soccer with my children.  She was showing signs of dementia, but still able to get around on her own.  She had seen camcorders, but with the onset of dementia she thought I was “filming.”

I had her look into the camcorder viewer.

“Look ma, this is you playing soccer with your grandchildren.”

She took a quick look and then pulled away.

“I don’t believe it, we were just playing a few minutes ago.”

“It’s on tape, it doesn’t need developing.”

She waved her hand at me and said,

“Oh, I don’t believe it, it’s a trick.”

She didn’t even want to see any more of the ‘trick.’

New technologies are amazing.  Some are so amazing that like my mom, when I first heard of them, I didn’t believe it.

Radio and TV were around when I was growing up, so those amazing things just seemed like old hat, but they must have elicited an “I don’t believe it” from just about everyone when they first came on the scene.

Color TV was great, but it seemed like an obvious next step in TV and was not ‘unbelievable.’

I thought someone was pulling my leg the first time I heard of a FAX machine.  The idea did not seem real. 

Computers, as amazing as they are kind of slipped in with gradual improvements so nothing about them really surprised me.  Well, the internet was a bit hard to accept, but it was so slow and crappy in the beginning that it also snuck up in phases.

My first experience with GPS was a real “I don’t believe it” moment.

My brother had a sailboat and we were sailing in the Chesapeake Bay.  Jim was a navigator in the Navy Air, so he was pretty good at plotting a course.  I tended to steer following contours of the shore, which from a distance could be confusing.

Jim was showing off his GPS navigation system which utilized signals from satellites.

“See this, if you look off to the port, we are coming up to the number 6 green buoy.”

“Damn, that is cool!  It has the marker accurate within only a few yards.”

“Yes…actually they could be accurate within less than an inch, but the government won’t allow it, they are afraid of precision guided bombs and such.”

“Inches?  I don’t believe you.”

Not many year later the government removed those accuracy restrictions and my car GPS tells me when to “Turn left at the next street, Smith Street.” 

The GPS is so accurate that I’ve heard someday a car will drive itself to where ever you program it to go.

Personally, ‘I don’t believe it! It must be some kind of trick.’



  1. Indeed, technology is moving so fast that there are a lot of "I don't believe it" moments still to come.

    For example there's a contraption that can actually cause arguments and discords within married life. It's a little (GPS) voice in the car which tells me to turn left when the wife sitting next to me tells me to turn right. Great contraption to start an argument and the "silent treatment".

    There's another contraption which when you press buttons it lowers the volume of the TV. But when I point it at my wife it has no effect apart from denying me a hot meal and initiating again the silent treatment; which serves as a mute button I suppose.

    There's another fun contraption. You put your clothes in it and it washes them. But when I put a red item therein it magically turns everything pink. You guessed it ... the silent treatment.

    What fun technology is.

    God bless.

  2. As Jiminy Cricket said when the Blue Fairy brought Pinocchio to life, "Man, what they can't do these days!"

  3. I have a love/hate relationship with google maps ~ especially when it sends me round and round to get to where I'm going when I could have just gone left and been there. But when I'm somewhere I am unfamiliar with, I love it!

  4. I don't like the idea of a car being able to drive itself. I prefer being in control. Not that I drive at all, but you get the idea.

  5. I think Alexa blew my mind. I could ask her a question and she instantly knew the answer. Wow.

  6. I had trouble understanding the internet at first. I was noticing cereal boxes carrying a www site on their boxes and all I could think was, "Why do I want to visit General Mills?" I just thought the whole thing was about advertising!

  7. There are computers? I DON"T BELIEVE IT!!

  8. I've given up on technology. It's moving so fast nowadays that I can't keep up with it so I've decided to ignore it. I sure miss my quill pen.

  9. A lot of amazing things have happened in our short lifetimes and if someone were to give us a glimpse into a future we have no hope of inhabiting we would doubtles say, "I don't believe it!".

  10. I never would have believed that a phone would track your every move and listen to your conversations, then ask how your visit was at a certain store, or suggest products related to your conversation!

  11. Did you know that when you get a colonoscopy there is GPS technology that tracks where the scope is when it's on it's trip through your colon. Believe it.

  12. I want a machine that folds my clothes and puts them away after I washed and dried them. I don't believe that will ever happen!