Whenever we sit with our elders, we’re bound to hear the “Hamaray zamaanay main/ Back in our days ..” stories, which no doubt are quite interesting and sometimes a good laugh too. Today, as we try to bridge the gap by bringing them up to speed with technology, I can’t help but wonder which era would have been more fun to be born in, then or now? I kind of feel like I’m on the fence about it. While certain old methods hold more value, it would have been a struggle to keep up with it in today’s fast-paced world. Just to name a few …
I’VE GOT NEWS FOR YOU: Daily or Hourly?
How does one possibly confirm a rumor doing rounds?
Modern: You’re always up to date with any breaking, happening or even TMI news just a ‘click of a finger’ away.
Ancient: A world with no Google, Siri or even Alexa! It was just a case of reading the newspaper or watching the news on the fixed time slot on tv.
Verdict: While information overload can be a bad thing (how many times has Google made you believe you were dying of a horrible disease?), it’s good to be aware of what’s going on in your surroundings. Even though at times it makes you overthink, how can you possibly not know?
YOU’VE GOT MAIL: Handwritten or typed?
You want to let someone know you’re thinking about them?
Modern: Easy peasy! Just type a message on your phone and within a second your message is conveyed.
Ancient: No SMS, emails, social media or even mobile phones! Imagine waiting days before receiving a letter from your loved one. The excitement must have been on another level and just reading through those hand-written notes must have been priceless!
Verdict: I’m a real sucker for anything hand-written and really feel all that charm and effort makes us value relationships more. But then time is of the essence in this fast-paced world, so why wait until tomorrow when you can convey your message right away? What I really need is technology that lets me email handwritten notes. Possible?!
TIME FOR A HOUSE PARTY: home-cooked or order-in?
All the guests have confirmed they’ll be coming. But wait, who’s going to cook?
Modern: Open any food delivery app and check the ratings of all the restaurants before deciding which one to cater from. Or better yet, let’s just take them out?
Ancient: Happiness is homemade. This probably also includes grinding all those fresh spices yourself. Chances are the bread/naan will be homemade too! The menu will be pondered upon and decided days in advance.
Verdict: As much as I hate cooking, my general rule of thumb is at least one dish should be homemade and there’s no harm if the other one’s are ordered in. Shows a bit of effort on your side plus you’re not too tired to mingle with the guests as well.
WHERE’S THAT NOISE COMING FROM? Replay or Rewind?
Heard a song that you love and wouldn’t mind listening to again and again?
Modern: All I need to do is download it and save it to my playlist to play on repeat as many times as I want to!
Ancient: No iTunes, SoundCloud or Spotify! It was either a case of waiting for the radio to play it again or the tape recorder era where you had to hit the ‘rewind’ button each time. It must’ve been great for the memory to remember where on the tape the track was placed.
Verdict: If you know me then you know I love to play my songs on repeat until you don’t start hating it (notice I said you and not me). But what about that excitement when the radio does play your song out of the blue? It just automatically puts you in a good mood right? And what about when the song goes out of fashion for the world but not for you? (Like Ed Sheeran’s “Perfect” in my case?!)
PHONE ETIQUETTES: social or anti-social?
What’s that one complaint every single person reading this has heard from their elders at least once a day?
Modern: Everyone is always on their phone no matter where they are. There is this constant FOMO and as a result we spend far too much time on our phones than we do with those sitting with us. Actual conversations are fewer and online phone updates are more.
Ancient: Meal times were precious as it was the best time for families to reconnect and communicate with each other without any phone interruptions.
Verdict: Being a blogger requires me to be on my phone, but then I’ve thoroughly enjoyed being without one each time I’ve gone on a detox. It means less distraction and being more social. But it’s a tricky one for me, because as much as I love and value time spent with my loved one’s, I also love capturing it on my phone to serve as a happy memory later. So what’s important then? Living in the moment or capturing it for later?
On hindsight, I guess there is no right or wrong way of doing things because what we consider ‘modern’ today will become ‘ancient’ tomorrow. Just like we laugh at things of the past today, what we consider cool right now will seem comical to the future generation tomorrow. Let that feeling sink in a bit. How can blogging, Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat etc possibly be called old-fashioned? It scares me to think how much more advanced technology can possibly become! Yikes!!
Would you ever like to go back in time? What’s that one moment you would love to re-live that your elders have shared with you?
Until the next post, ‘Let’s Keep It Strictly Lighthearted!’