Thursday, July 2, 2009


I’ll come right out and say it: I’m sick of learning shit.

Every new purchase—whether it’s a TV, cell phone, or coffee maker—comes with a 100-page user’s manual. No more simply plugging stuff in and turning it on. Part of the reason I don’t buy anything is because I dread the accompanying learning curve; it’s not good for my blood pressure. I have all the patience in the world for people, but I could take a friggin’ hammer to a machine that doesn’t do what I want it to do.

I don’t know about you, but I am really starting to feel overwhelmed by technology. For a while I’ve been shamed into transitioning to Gmail from AOL (which I was perfectly happy with). “You’re still on AOL? You have to switch to Gmail.” So I gave in and now I have to learn the in’s and out’s of Gmail. Tuesday night it took me a good hour and a half to figure out how to send a mailing out to all the contacts on my mailing list, a task I could have accomplished in 10 minutes using AOL. And the worst part is, no sooner will I get Gmail down and I’ll be hearing, “You’re still on Gmail? That was so 2009.”

MySpace is out, Facebook is in. For now. You have to be on Twitter, you must be on Twitter. Well, guess what? Twitter can kiss my ass. I don’t give a crap that your bagel was delicious or that it’s raining again. You know scones, those overpriced bakery items that are supposed to be so cool they even sell them at Starbucks? Well, scones are shit; they taste like friggin’ dust. Totally overrated.

Twitter is just as overrated; it's the scone of technology. I'm not afraid to say the emperor’s naked: Twitter is a load of shit, for the most part, anyway. And “tweeting” sounds gay.

As a technical writer in a technology company (surprised?), I’m constantly learning in order to do my job. I don’t mind that; it’s to be expected. But I don’t appreciate having to learn technology so I can do other people’s jobs. In the course of a day, I can perform the duties of a grocery store clerk, bank teller, postal clerk, airline check-in clerk… Not to sound snobby (and I truly don’t mean to come across that way--those are all noble professions), but in high school we were advised to go to college so we wouldn't have to do those jobs.

Because I’m self-publishing my book, I have a ton to learn. There’s new software to understand, and now that I have my own publishing company, there are the nuts and bolts of setting up and maintaining a business. I also need to create a website I can sell books from and figure out how to get the thing in e-book and Kindle formats. I’ll also want to create an audio version. I don’t minding learning that stuff—that’s all aligned with my goal of getting my book out to you. But even so, I just want to learn it once and be done with it. Don't tell me the software I just spent two weeks learning is now antiquated.

I sound old, don’t I? I don’t care (as long as I don’t look old).

But what about you? Is technology making you mental? Are you sick of learning shit, too?


Sous-chef said...

Amen sister!!! If it wasn't for real life I wouldn't touch the stuff, not nearly as satisfying as a beer and chocolate.

Caz Wilson said...

I see what you mean, I've got to learn stuff for what I want to do too. I've set up a blog on the "other" blogging site and I truly hate it, was much happier with blogger but because I should know about the other site, I've decided to give it a go to my peril!!

But some stuff I like learning about like a new gadget - I've always been like that though

Stephanie said...

LOL Too true. We have a satellite dish now. If it goes "down" I have to read a book till hubs gets home. I'm that pathetic. I can't be bothered! said...

I'm so like you. I have said that I wouldn't be doing the twittering thing but the only reason why I would consider it is for publishing and networking. Once I get on board, it's going to take me a good two weeks to figure it all out!

Other Mikey's Julie said...

I prefer to plug it in, push the on button and be done - but nothing works like that anymore.
I haven't tried twitter yet because I work at home, go nowhere and do nothing. Who wants to hear me tweet everytime I change a diaper?? I don't think so. AND I certainly don't want to know what everyone else is doing out in the real world with grown ups who talk and don't need wiped every 20 minutes.
I vote for beer and chocolate, too.

dle1004 said...

I am with you...bought a new TV used to be simple right? longer can you just plug thing in and play...for crying out loud you don't even get a manual get a CD...more steps to just find out where the stupid hidden buttons are...I said screw it called Direct TV and had them do it...I cannot be bothered with techno stuff on my own time!!

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Carol/Careann said...

Just happened onto your blog and got a chuckle out of this. I sympathize with your aversion to complex technology. Due to a huge electrical power surge (don't even ask!) we recently had to replace all our computer equipment including the software. My biggest beef was MS Office, where Word's latest version tries to second guess everything I'm writing. It drives me nuts! Fortunately we're Mac users, and so the computers themselves were pretty much "plug and play".

linda said...

I bought my son an Apple Itouch music thingy for his twelveth birthday. Of course, it was ME that had to get it up and running, me who had to show him how to download songs etc. onto it. Me who had to get the docking station all set up beside his bed AND set the alarm on it.

However, in exchange for my efforts, he always gets the dvd working for me.

When is ironing going to become automated?

Fragrant Liar said...

I'll be honest. I signed up for a Twitter account -- much against my better judgement and only because everybody else was doing it. Same thing for FaceBook. What a bunch of malarkey. Why do I want to be that much in touch with anybody? Why isn't email and a phone and a blog good enough? Christ. I'm boycotting all future technology, and you can kick my ass if I cave.

travel girl said...

OMG, I am so with you. I once went to buy a washer and dryer and the dude was trying to show me this fancy dryer that I swear probably folded your clothes once they were dry. It had sooo many buttons that less than 1 minute into the explanation, I was tuning him out.

My brain just can't (or won't) absorb it all.

Sous-Chef said...

I had to send this your way...I couldn't believe it

Vegas Linda Lou said...

@ Viva: Thanks for the referral. My BF is a total computer geek and will do that stuff for me, but I'm sure others appreciate knowing where to go.

@ Sous-Chef: Oh, for Christsakes. You have to be kidding me.

Todd said...

I love technology but I'm a huge geek so this is not surprising. I like nothing better than seeing something improved that didn't really need the improvement. DVDs are awesome and mind blowing in their clarity, remember the VHS? That was a necessary improvement. BluRay? Not so much, but I still get all orgasmic about it.

(be warned, 2 cliches upcoming, I try to warn ahead of time to let you know I don't just throw them out willy-nilly)

I think your complaints about twitter are valid but only to a point. This is a missing the forest for the trees situation (cliche 1) . The kind of people who talk ad nauseum about what bagel they had for breakfast or helpfuly letting us know what they ate last night for dinner and how it smells now as they take a dump, these are the people we don't need to be paying attention to on twitter. It is so much more useful in a lot of ways but it's not something you can be told, it's something that has to be experienced not observed. You've been led to the water but you have to drink it to see how wonderful it is (cliche #2 AND a spurious analogy to boot...this is why I'm not a writer)

Todd said...

And for the record...the word "tweeting" does indeed sound ridiculously gay