We live in the age of Smart. We have Smart Phones, Smart TV’s, Smart Houses. The only thing that apparently isn’t smart enough is me.
My smart TV can go between live television and multiple streaming services with a press of a button or by voice commands. This electronic miracle promises to open my life to a mélange of different experiences, sights, sounds and entertainment.
My house is set up with Echo Dots which are handled with an app on my phone. They automatically turn on night lights, holiday decorations, sprinkler systems, and ambient lighting for the patio. They can even “drop in” and used as an intercom with other in another part of the house. All with a simple voice command to “Alexa”.
My computer is set up with my favorite most used programs available with a mere click, can wake up and go to sleep at my whim and can reach the World Wide Web, my friends, and even those I don’t know but want to know – all with a mere click of a mouse.
My car is so smart it can sense when I am approaching, unlock my doors, start the engine, parallel park and cool the interior all curtesy of electronics melding with mechanics.
So why do I long for the simpler days when we had to get up to turn or change the channels of the TV and hand crank the windows on my car?
It’s because of glitches. You know, when the electronics in your computer, TV, remote, Echo dot or car suddenly goes off line, goes silent, or simply won’t move off of the last command. It’s called a glitch.
Recently I experienced several of these glitches all in rapid succession.
On Father’s Day we decided to watch church on You Tube (St. Couch as our friends call it) because we were meeting up with family to celebrate the Dads. Thad turned on the TV, changed to Roku, chose You Tube and connected with the proper subscription and time of the service. Two minutes into the service the picture cut out, said we lost our power source and told to follow 5 different steps in order to trouble shoot the issue. Since the service had already started and while we could not see it, we still hear the service we listened as if it were the radio. It was kind of neat actually. However, when we decided to go back to live TV it wouldn’t allow us to regardless of what we did. We finally took it as a sign that God wanted us to MOVE! It was a glitch.
Our Echo Dots are set up to automatically turn on a group of night lights throughout our home. One of the lights decided to break rank and desert the squad and became “unresponsive”. Sometimes, just going into the Alexa app, turning it on, off and on again will restore it. This time I had to go into the individual app (Smart Life, WEMO and Gosund) and reset it. That’s when I glitched because I couldn’t remember which App it belonged to.
But the biggest glitch and the most frightening was also the most life threatening.
It was to be a lovely outing of errands, appointments, a nice leisurely lunch, finishing with a Costco run. We were in our 6 month old “Lady Lincoln” when we approached a red light at a four lane intersection that had two cars ahead of us in both lanes. Thad applied his breaks, but they failed to engage. Thinking Thad was glitching I yelled “Break! Break!” He yelled “I am! I am!” Thank God the left turning lane was open and he swerved into it, went around the two cars and swerved back into the lane and ran the red light. Thad was still pumping the breaks as we crossed the intersection when the breaks suddenly engaged jerking us to a complete and sudden stop. Needless to say, we were left speechless and shaking.
The Lincoln dealership was appalled and concerned to say the least. They promptly came to our home to pick up the car and leave us a loaner. Frankly, I was ready for them to just take the car back. I told Thad that this was proof that Lady Lincoln was indeed the modern version of Stephen King’s Christine! See my blog post https://www.lorettaschoen.com/2021/outside-the-medical-bag/29526/i-know-im-old-when-my-electronics-are-smarter-than-me/ for how I came to this conclusion. Only this time it was no laughing matter. It took the Lincoln Service Department and the Lincoln Corporate offices three weeks to determine that it was both a mechanical (break failure) and electronic issue and that it was indeed resolved. We shall see. I can tell you I drive Lady Lincoln like a little old lady and test my breaks way before I actually need to stop. I also located the hand break just in case. Of course, that may be electronic as well; in which case I am glad Thad and I have prepaid funeral plans.
Look, it’s all I can handle when I glitch. Do I need my TV, phone, car and appliances to glitch as well? Electronics glitch and I get cranky and frustrated. Our schedules get “glitchy” and we find ourselves stressed to re-organize and prioritize our day. Francesca reminds me that these are first-world problems and she is right. Life is filled with glitches. And most of the time, I can handle the glitches. But I do find myself seeking the simplicity of the solely mechanical item that while it takes more energy, it also burns more calories, is dependable and can be easily repaired or replaced.
I glitch often and have to cut myself some slack. So too, I must accept that everyone and everything glitches and needs a little leeway as well. To accept what cannot be changed, change what can and wisdom to know the difference.
Today we have so much available to us that we become spoiled and indignant when they don’t work and we must resort to a simpler way of doing things. But have you ever noticed that when your electronics glitch and you can’t use them for a time there is less bombardment of constant input? The cacophony that we have become used to as normal is far from what God intended. And the glitches allow us to stop, reflect, hear our own voice and seek the voice of our heavenly Father.
I am beginning to think glitches are God’s way of getting us to slow down, live simply and appreciate the world He created for us. If so, then “God, bring on the glitches and let me see them as blessings and not stressings.
2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.
What do you consider a glitch in your day to day life? What glitches drive you crazy? How do you deal with them? Let’s have a conversation.
Thank you for reading my post. If you have found it encouraging please consider liking, commenting or sharing it. Feel free to even re-blog – may these words take flight!
I have additional insights I’d love to share with you found in the pages of my debut book: Surviving Medical Mayhem – Laughing When It Hurts. To order a copy or learn more go to my website at www.lorettaschoen.com
Blessings for Health & Wellness.