Technically speaking, I’m stuffed.
I’ve always seen myself as an independent self-sufficient kind of guy so I have instinctively resisted buying gadgets that are designed to make life easy and learning how to use time saving technology such as predictive text and podcasts.
Oh no, those things are for women and wimps; I’m a real man, the kind who works on his 4×4 with spanners, screwdrivers, crow bars and hammers, and not only watches American football but actually understands the rules.
This year, however, my resistance to keeping up with the times came back and bit me on the ass, as we say in the States, just as I settled in to watch my home team, the New York Giants, try to win the 2012 Super Bowl.
The American football championship game was played in the early evening on a Sunday in the USA so the broadcast started after midnight in England where I am now living with one of my daughters. I had one of these columns to file the next morning so instead of figuring out how to record the thing myself I did the manly thing and I got my child to do it for me and explain which buttons I had to press on the remote to find it once my work was done. Then I went to bed.
The next day, as soon as my column had zipped off to Gaborone via the technological wonder of the internet – no complaints there – I settled down in front of the flat-screen and slowly started tapping away at the remote.
Recorded programmes, got it; Super Bowl, got it. Now all I have to do is press and play and… Parental Control PIN number; what the f…!
Like I say, when it comes to technology I’m a dinosaur, but I’ve come to the conclusion that a big part of the problem is that I take a twisted pride in being behind the times. There was no reason I shouldn’t have known that all programmes recorded after eight pm require a parental release to be viewed and there certainly was no reason I couldn’t have remembered the PIN was 1234 if I’d bothered to pay attention when the cable TV box was being installed. But I didn’t, so I had to wait for my 15-year-old daughter to come home so she could tell the TV I was allowed to watch the game.
I’m not sure there is any business point to this week’s MYOB, but I really wanted to share that misadventure with you so we could have a laugh. It is interesting, though, that when we try really hard to do something – like be self sufficient and independent, for example – we often go to such extremes that we wind up being just the opposite.
I guess it’s another example of how important balance is in our live. Relying on technology too much is dangerous – especially if you live in a country where the power can go off at any time – but actively resisting it can mean you won’t be able to watch a football game until your child comes home from school.