Time to admit my age, I guess. More than a decade ago, I was a leader in adapting to and embracing technology. Hell, for my day job, I even built a computer class from the ground up, teaching students (both clients and coworkers) everything from how to turn on a computer to how to create a professional-looking document.
Times have changed.
…and so have I. At first, I loved upgrades. I loved when we got a new version of Internet Explorer or Word and I went with the flow. Sometime in between then and now, though, something changed. I wish I knew when and why. For years, I refused to get a smart phone–my rationale was that I hated talking on the phone anyway, so why the hell would I want the stupid thing following me around everywhere? After all, my car was the only place I had alone time. My husband started affectionately (mostly) calling me a Luddite, and my kids thought I was anti-tech. Not so–I had to use a computer forty hours a week in my day job, and it wasn’t much different in my teaching job. And, even though I grumbled, I adapted and accepted upgrades in my work computers.
Okay, so I didn’t have a choice.
Some changes I didn’t mind. Yes, I’d spend several days “tweaking” my computer settings because I liked them a certain way, but once that was done, I was good until the next computer swap out. My college job forced change even more rapidly. Every time Microsoft farted, we got upgrades, so I had no choice but to learn new versions of Word and Excel, and what really sucked about that was that my home computer had one version, my day job had another, and the college had yet another. Still, I managed to survive in each microcosm.
I think, though, that it was somewhere during that time that I began to resist change. It wasn’t for Luddite-y ways, mind you (did you see I just made up a new word?). It was because, I guess, I’m getting older and I can see now that change is a pain in the ass. Just when I get used to something, there goes the rug being pulled out from under me again, and I need to waste valuable time retraining myself.
(Grumpy old man voice) Get off my lawn!
That resistance led me to not perform upgrades…often…unless forced to. If I was getting ready to shut down my computer and Microsoft had updates, okay, fine, go ahead and do it, even though the last three times made shit wonky on my browser for a few days until I figured out what the new settings messed up.
My phone, though? I didn’t update it for MONTHS and my oldest son gave me grief about it constantly. Want to know why I didn’t want to update it? Because I hated the new look. That’s right. I didn’t want my phone to look different. In retrospect, that’s pretty funny, but at the time, I was tired of people moving my damn cheese (yes, I realize that’s an obscure reference, but some of you will get it). Want to know why I finally upgraded? Godsmack. Yes, Godsmack. I had to wait just a few more days to buy their new album (1000HP), but I got an email from them that I could listen to the whole thing on iTunes radio. Weeelllll, my phone didn’t support iTunes radio without an upgrade and, dammit, I wanted fresh Godsmack! I was able to listen to the album at home on iTunes on my computer, but I wanted to hear it at work too. I didn’t want to have to wait four or five more days before I could purchase the actual CD!!!
Silly, yes, but that’s how bad I’ve become.
Sooooo…fast forward to last week. I have had multiple upgrades listed on my WordPress dashboard for, oh, perhaps *cough* years that I had chosen to ignore. Yes, ignore. My hubby-slash-occasional webmaster (when I beg) could upgrade next time he was on if he thought it was important. Yeah, well, so the upgrades never happened. Why? Because change. That’s why. I didn’t want to deal with change. Sites I use frequently (Facebook, Amazon, Twitter, to name a few) were constantly changing things and I had no choice. My site? I had a choice and I chose NO!!!
Last week (as some of you know), my website crashed and went BOOM! I saw that *shudder* my dashboard on WordPress had changed (grumpy old man voice: grumble grumble), but I was checking it out because a reader had mentioned that she couldn’t find the link I have to buy signed copies of my books. Well, I could see my (new and improved) dashboard just fine, but the site itself was toast. I asked webmaster hubby to check it out.
Well, here is where I discovered the errors of my ways. I hadn’t upgraded for a very long time and, he said, it made my website vulnerable. I’m not exactly sure of all the details, but it was pretty serious and it was sketchy for a while. We thought I was going to lose all the content I’d ever posted on the blog portion of this site (which, honestly, is about all I do here–I write! Big surprise). I was bummed but hoping it could be saved. As you can see now, it was, but hubby made sure to tell me that I must upgrade when they are offered. (Of course, I’m thinking that if those upgrades are so godd*mned important, why don’t they just happen?!?!) If I don’t, this could happen again.
So, I guess, my New Year’s resolution will have to be not to embrace change or new tech with open arms, but to not be a dumb ass and just take the stupid upgrade. JUST DO IT!
So…I’m back. Another thing I’m hoping to do is post here more often. The site itself needs a facelift (yes, more change), but this is one place online I have control over. I can’t control the shit going on at Amazon or Facebook or anywhere else. Here, though, I rule, and what I say goes…so I plan to utilize that freedom a whole lot more.
Happy New Year, my friends. Here’s to a great one! Thank you for being here and reading my stuff. 🙂