This past Thanksgiving my six-year-old niece asked me if I had a webcam and then proceeded to tell me how much more fun it would be if we could see each other while we talk on the computer.
For the sake of brevity I’ll leave out the part about the abuse I took from a certain adult regarding why this was another area in which his Apple computer is superior because it comes with a built in webcam.
My niece went on to explain to me how much fun she was having staying in touch with other relatives and that not only would it be good for me, it would be great for grandma and grandpa because they really want to see their grandchildren while they speak with them. I refrained from mentioning that they see the grandchildren that live here on a regular basis and even babysit. Hah, somewhere my little sister is gritting her teeth and doesn’t even know why.
Speaking of the same little sister, also known as the mother of my niece, you are in trouble. I can already see that your daughter is going to have way too much fun speaking on the computer. In fact I can see the day when she’ll have a fit trying to figure out what to wear and how to do her hair so that she can talk to some boy.
I suppose that this is something that I’ll have to deal with in my own house sooner or later. I wonder if we can fix the camera so that it looks like they have some big, black ugly thing in their teeth. That should slow down the nonsense a bit.
Anyway over Winter Break I finally bit the bullet and purchased a webcam for my home and have spent time making good use of it. We have spoken with all sorts of friends and family around the world. This past weekend I dazzled my soon to be 94 year old grandparents with the webcam.
They were amazed by it. As my grandfather said he remembers when they didn’t have telephones in their house. He also teased my grandmother by threatening to do a striptease on camera. Did I mention that in June they’ll celebrate their 74th wedding anniversary or that they spent the evening holding hands. While I am at it let me share another story about them, or should I say about my grandfather and something he once told me.
Let me set the scene for you. It is four years ago and we’re out celebrating my grandmother’s 90th birthday. My grandfather and I are sitting and talking about life. Nothing too important, just kind of enjoying each other’s company. While we are sitting there my grandmother gets up from the table and walks across the room.
As she stands up my grandfather reaches over and grabs my wrist. For a moment I expect him to ask me to help him stand up but then I notice that he is not trying to stand, he is just watching her walk.
“Jack, I think that your grandmother still has a great ass.”
My jaw dropped open. My grandfather didn’t speak that way ever about my grandmother. Ok, let me clear something up, he didn’t say it in a demeaning manner. It didn’t sound like he was objectifying her. It sounded like a man who was head over heels for a woman. Part of me was quite happy and part of me was going ewwwwwwwwww. This is not a side of my grandparents that I wanted to see, although it was sort of cute.
Ok, end of side story.
Yesterday I was working on the computer so that I could try and get a head start on some work when I heard my son on the telephone. I wasn’t sure who was talking to, but I knew that they asked about me because I could hear him say that I was on the computer. Naturally I tuned into the conversation and then heard him say:
“Dad is playing with himself on the webcam.”
As you can imagine this got my attention. So I stood up and wandered over and asked him to give me the phone. It was my father on the other line. So I asked him what he was talking to Little Jack about it.
Dad: Do you and I need to talk about this webcam and what is appropriate.
Me: Nope, I am good.
Dad: Do you know what you son is telling people you are doing?
Me: Yes, I heard him.
Dad: Do you have any plans to talk to him about it?
Me: Nah, I think that life will be far more interesting if he tells everyone about it the same way that he told you. Wait until mom hears.
Dad: You know one day you’re going to find that he is just like you and then you’ll understand.
Me: I’ll understand how lucky I am. You’re the man with four daughters. No wonder you lost all your hair.
Dad: Between your sisters and you it is a wonder that I am here.
Me: Hang on a second dad, your grandson has a question for you.
And with that my son got back on the phone and told my father that it was ok if we wanted to come over and play with himself on our camera too. Because it wouldn’t be fair if I was the only one who got to do that.
Later on I just might have to share the story of what happened when we talked about this.