TECHNOLOGY by Jim Beane

Technology and I are not friends. We are becoming friendlier but we are definitely not friends. Don’t get me wrong. I like technology but I fail to grasp the inner workings, the lingo, the intentions. I have been trying this year to manage my website on my own but nothing works quite the way I want. First, I’ve got a whole new software routine called DIVI which I know nothing about. I worked as a carpenter for forty years and every year, every day, almost every hour spent on the job was physically demanding. Bur the longer I worked, the easier it became and the stronger it made me. By the time I stopped, I was at my best. I could build houses, remodel bathrooms, build decks, garages and sling hammers with any man claiming to be a professional carpenter. But I developed a slight problem-age. At sixty years old, the handwriting was on the walls. I couldn’t stand on a roof for long, I couldn’t stand on a ladder all day and I was losing the one thing that had been my saving grace since starting in construction- agility. I no longer had the ability to catch myself if tripped or somehow knocked off balance. The entire time I worked on construction sites, residential construction of the architectural variety (high dollar work the crew called it- I am still uncertain why as we were paid no more to build a shed than build a sauna). Blue collar workers are paid by the hour, not the job. There are no salaries, no sabbaticals. Show up with your tools and get to work.

Now, in these new and changing times, we all have smartphones, the great equalizer. We cannot stay off them. They are fun, informative, friendly, rewarding. Smartphones are smart, smarter than most of us. In these sad times of social isolation, they are invaluable. I don’t have a landline where I live now, my wife and I use our cells. But in this moment, we, meaning all humanity, not just some, not just the privileged but all humanity, worldwide. Think for one second how lost and alone we might feelĀ  without the means to communicate. But everyone has a cell, you say. And that is modern America or at least who we see in America walking her streets and driving on her roads. What of the invisibles? Those without state of the art technology, a technology designed to help but furthering the inequity of class. I am not down on technology, I am down with technology. I am down with a technology for the people. Free top value education needs to be made available to all. This is what governments are for-to provide for the people. No ranting here, I’ll save my rant for another day. But how are we to close the gaps that exist between peoples in the world, to become equalized, to become one people, not one religion, not one race but one diverse people.