Cool connections

When my teenage kids continued to tease me on a recent visit home that I am anti-social and not ‘cool’ because I am not on facebook, it irked me considerably. I may not be cool in the way they perceive men and matters, but I am indeed a social and rational person. I told them in no uncertain terms that Facebook held no appeal to me.

It didn’t wash with the duo. They waxed eloquent on Facebook, saying that even grandpas and grandmas have signed up and how it helped Obama win the election. An argument also ensued on how tech-savvy I was or not.

I couldn’t care less. There’s enough and more to cope with in the daily grind and the last thing I wanted was to log into another website and network or socialise. Worse was, to create and remember login and password details. Besides, to be candid, I felt it was a mindless preoccupation on the internet and I preferred real life and friends, not digital ones.

Living hundreds of miles away from the family, I spent an awful lot of money on phone calls. But whenever I called, the kids were either out or busy on the Net. If I did get them on the phone, it was all too brief. Clearly, a communication gap had set in.

Then, to my utter dismay, my better half confessed that, of late, her conversations with the kids were mainly via sms, chat or facebook. After agonising over this for weeks, I threw in the towel and sheepishly signed up on facebook.

What happened thereafter was nothing less than a miracle. I was confirmed friend of my kids instantly on facebook and voila! It was like being with them. I knew what was happening in their lives on a daily, sometimes hourly basis. What’s more, I was privy to their latest photographs, videos, messages, comments on almost everything under the sun, their weekend plans, even about their friends and their friends’ friends. I also peep into my better half’s home page frequently.

Indeed, a communication revolution is happening. Although my son and daughter may not comment when questioned about their studies or exams, or how much time they spend surfing the internet, they talk about themselves regularly. We are in touch. And oh yes, my phone bills have dropped significantly and I am a ‘cool’ dad now.

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