HAL was toying with me
(From “2001: A Space Odyssey”. If you haven’t seen it, here is my synopsis in six words: Artificial intelligence tries to take over….)
For Camp last year, I thought it would be a good idea to make our home a technology-free zone for the kids (in my defense, I still intended to use technology when it made sense…).
It was an innocent thought.
A thought borne of concern about ubiquitous headphones, screen-glazed eyes and low inter-action with other humans.
It never once occurred to me that technology might not want to be broken free of (from?)
On the first day of Camp, we piled six boys in a rented van with NO dvd player (gasp). I handed everyone license plate bingo cards and some pencils and we were off to a great start. In fact, the boys really enjoyed playing this century old game (I’m quite sure people must have played license plate bingo 100 years ago. It was more like… Find a car, does it have a license plate? Or, find the license plate that has a bite taken out of it. Something like that)
We talked, we told riddles and jokes and I asked a bunch of questions….
It was good. Really. Who needs technology?
I didn’t suspect anything the first night of Camp. Mr. H. was sleeping in the Cowboy Room with the boys and I was getting things done on the main floor. I tumbled into bed around midnight.
At 12:30 a.m., an alarm went off.
I jumped out of bed and looked outside for what could only be an impending tornado. Nope. Back to bed. At 1:00 a.m. , it went off again…then 1:30 am….and on and on.
The next day, as I stumbled around trying to wake up, I headed to the coffee machine for a much-needed cup of coffee.
It was NOT brewing and it didn’t stop there….
It was 9:00 p.m. and our electricity went out just as we were watching a movie (poor Kevin was so distraught. “I don’t think I can handle this without my family”.)
The Wii stopped working just as we were going to salvage a rain-soaked Olympics Day.
What was happening?
Since then, my range heating element on my stove stopped working (horrors) , our fire alarms and carbon monoxide detectors ALL went kerflooey and then my hard drive crashed. Finally, and most recently, my external hard drive (with 40,000+ pictures) blew a circuit board.
See the question marks? That means my computer cannot find the pictures (disaster).
I realize now that I had offended technology. Something must be done.
“Hello, HAL. Do you read me, HAL?”
“HAL. I’m sorry. I promise, I will use all the technology I can get my hands on. I realize now, I made a mistake.”