I'll tell the grandkids a tale of the little, yellow America Online guy trapped in the second of three boxes as he tries to connect to the Internet.
A while ago, I displayed three remotes on the coffee table and explained to my parents, who were watching the kids for the night, which device each controlled.
The steps involved sounded much like those required to launch a nuclear missile, but I assured them it was easier than it looked.
"Don't worry, I got it," my 5-year-old chimed in, spinning a remote like it was a six-shooter and she was the fastest draw in the Midwest.
And she did have it. It's quite amazing how quickly kids pick things up.
Technology changes so fast that, at some point, my kids will pass me. One day, I won't know where all the plugs go or understand why there are no plugs, and they will teach me.
And I'm OK with it. I'll sit in my rocker and mispronounce the names of new things I don't understand. Then I'll tell tales of how you could boil water in the time it took to log on to the Internet. And yes, you had to log on every time, because it tied up the lone phone line in the house. And if your sister picked up the phone, she was met with a metal-tinged garble of squiggles, and your Internet connection was lost.
I'll tell the grand kids a tale of the little, yellow America Online guy trapped in the second of three boxes on the computer screen as he tries to connect to the Internet. I'll tell them how AOL used to send out free minutes of Internet access on CD to everyone, all the time. We used to rake them into piles and jump in them.
And the grandkids will send me a text message with an emoji rolling its eyes.
One night, my daughter walked into the kitchen and announced it was time to dance. This is standard in our home.
"Alexa, play music!" she said. You don't think about how weird it is to talk to robots until you have one.
"Isn't it crazy that you can talk to the house?" I asked her. I was referring to the Amazon Echo, a speaker that tells you the weather, will read this column to you and records all of your conversations for the government.
"The house can't talk," she replied.
I pointed at the speaker.
"Oh, Alexa," she said. "Yeah, it's a little weird."
At the mention of the name, a blue circle glowed atop the speaker, and my daughter repeated her request. Loud music began to play.
"Alexa, turn the volume down," I said. Nothing. So, I repeated. Again, I was ignored.
"I got it, dad," my daughter said. "Alexa, quieter!"
And the volume turned down.
David Manley is an editor at The Canton Repository. Share your stories with him at email@example.com.
On Twitter: @DaveManley