Those dear old analog days

Once upon a time, in the good old days of analog, I could do no wrong. In fact, some said - mostly me - that I was the King of Analog. Yes, as the song goes, "Those were the days."

During those dear old analog days, I was smarter than all my kitchen appliances. And they darn well knew it. Yes. I knew how open the fridge, turn on the stove and even use the oven without a YouTube tutorial. Now, all my kitchen appliances are smarter than me. My fridge knows when I've left the door open too long - "Beep, beep, beep." And I know what it's thinking - "Close the fridge, dummy." Yeah, really irritating. And I know they're talking behind my back, too, giggling in their "Beep beep" way. Don't they think I can hear the sarcasm? "Beeeeeep. Beeeeeep." So arrogant.

In the good old analog days, I entered my car with total confidence. I could turn on the ignition, turn on the radio, roll down the windows and even master those newfangled CDs (eventually). Now, since I don't have a degree in software engineering, my entertainment screen just stares at me, waiting for me to do something. But I never do.

In those days of lore, there was no such thing as butt dialing your landline phone. Trust me, I tried it. Now, I inadvertently butt dial long lost relatives that I've been avoiding for years - with dire consequences like invitations to reunions with even more relatives I've been avoiding for years.

Before everything was zero and one, one and zero, zero and one. I didn't have to scour the Internet whenever I wanted to travel. I didn't have to play airfare roulette to get the lowest fares. No. I simply visited my travel agent and she did the rest. And, get this, it was free!

In the old days, no one in Russia, China, North Korea or Iran could steal my financial and personal data because it was in a safe deposit box and only I had the key. (If I could only find it.)

In the good old analog days, all mail was snail mail - slow and plodding, just like me. It never demanded immediate answers because the United States Postal Service had trained us for years not to expect anything immediately. Now, if you don't answer emails within the hour, you're branded as a total moral failure.

Oh, I could go on and on about those dear old analog days. But remembering how competent I was back then just depresses me. Yes, those definitely "were the days, my friends."

If you feel the same, butt dial me and we'll talk.

- Bill Barre of Hinsdale is a contributing columnist. Readers can email him at [email protected].