, Derry, New Hampshire


January 24, 2013

Column: I’ve officially joined the 21st century


I’ve yet to master the double-thumb technique. I fear permanent paralysis, kind of like when adults told us kids never to cross our eyes, because they’d stay that way.

I even caught myself multitasking the other day, a skill I believed to be neurologically impossible for me to master. As I sat in my favorite chair watching a cable-news program, I grabbed my iPhone and did the one-finger flip through the digital pages of the Washington Post, getting the latest updates on my beloved Redskins. I now know it’s possible, in one sitting, to feel heavily sedated by all the fiscal cliff talk and get NFL playoff fever at the same time.

But back to texting. I think it’s — dare I say it — fun. Now I understand why my students would rather text each other than divide improper fractions. And because texting is writing, I’m more comfortable being my snarky self. For some reason, my words seem less cutting in cyberspace than when they’re the spoken variety.

Betty called me recently and left a voice message. Uh-oh, I hadn’t learned how to access those yet. I tapped the phone icon, but then I got lost. Just too many other things to tap on every corner of the screen. I wound up on a NASDAQ chart that looked frighteningly like the math section on the SAT. What to do?

I texted Betty, and she texted me back.


John Edmondson is a teacher in Hampstead.

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