By Betty Williamson
I clearly remember the first cell phone I ever saw, sometime in the 1980s, strapped securely on the belt of a friend.
It was huge by modern standards — about the size and weight of a brick, with an antenna as big as a pencil. To demonstrate this wonder, from right there in the middle of the High Plains Mall in Clovis, he dialed up his mother in Kansas and had a short visit. It was nothing short of miraculous.
Fast forward three decades. With a daughter moving out of range of our local cellular service provider, we faced the dreaded task of buying a new phone. Or wait — I stand corrected — a new “device.”
Somehow in the course of my lifetime, I have been left in the electronic dust. As we wandered through the baffling display of high-tech gadgets (more sci-fi than wi-fi to me), our chipper college-aged clerk provided a running narrative about “gigabytes,” “data,” “apps,” and “interfaces.”
She showed us razor-thin shards of brilliance so delicate they require (at an additional cost, of course) “tempered glass screen protection,” and/or, better yet, an “OtterBox,” which seems to have nothing whatsoever to do with semiaquatic, carnivorous mammals.
I’ve never been more grateful for technology and the ability to communicate across the miles.
But I’m so confused.
Betty Williamson is off to search for two soup cans and a piece of string. You may reach her at: