Eoin Butler: writer, journalist and Mayoman of the Year

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“I haven’t been this excited about a technological breakthrough since they invented the dish scrubber with the washing-up liquid inside it…”

dishmatique
Until quite recently, I was very pernickety about punctuality. Your punctuality. If you were five minutes late to meet me in a cafe or a bar, I’d be strumming my fingers on the tabletop when you arrived. Ten minutes and I’d be shooting you the old stink eye. Twenty minutes or more and I’d have prepared a short monologue in which I outlined all your deficiencies as a friend and a human being. Yeah, I was kind of a hard ass. So have I mellowed in my old age? Have I learned to stop and smell the flowers? Have I in my hole. No, someone gave me an iPhone for my birthday. I’m not sure if you’ve heard about these things. I had myself only the haziest conception of what they do. Basically, it’s a mobile phone you can use to surf the internet. I’ll repeat that. It’s a mobile phone you can use to surf the internet.

Holy crap, I haven’t been this excited about a technological breakthrough since they invented the dish scrubber with washing-up liquid inside it. And this is about forty million times more exciting! So take your time, my tardy friends. The only caveat is that, when you get here, you’d better be at least interesting as the internet. Because otherwise, buddy, you’re just dead weight to me.

The emergence of these new technologies constantly alters the paradigm in which we all exist. And there’s no point looking to the older generation for guidance. My late father’s most profound rumination on the subject of technology came during the six o’clock news one evening. “I’ll say one thing for these paedophiles,” he said. “They’re great with computers. Jesus, I can barely send an email!”

There’s no opting out either. The other day I bumped into a friend who refuses to buy a mobile phone. What are you doing Saturday? he asked. I shrugged. He wanted me to join him for a drink. He’d be in Mulligans, he said. Then Grogans. Then The Cobblestone. If he went anywhere else, he’d leave a message with one of the barmen on the way. I didn’t mince words. What planet are you living on, I asked? This ain’t Treasure Hunt. I ain’t Anneka Rice. We never did catch up for that drink.

Facebook is another baffling phenomenon. The other day, it suggested I make Facebook friends with a girl I’ve known since we were four years old. We went to school together and have some 52 Facebook friends in common, apparently. Well, I was all set press Add until a disturbing thought struck me. If this girl was being suggested as my potential friend, I figured, then I was very likely also being suggested as a friend to her. I hadn’t logged into my account in over a week.

What the hell, did she think she was too good for me? That stuck up bitch- I never liked her! Sufficed to say, I didn’t click Add. And the next time I see her, I’m giving her the stink eye to end all stink eyes. Yeah, I’m a little rusty. But it’s coming out of retirement for the occasion. You mark my words!

April 29th, 2010.

12 Responses to ““I haven’t been this excited about a technological breakthrough since they invented the dish scrubber with the washing-up liquid inside it…””

  1. Adrian Russell Says:

    I’ll say one thing for these paedophiles,” he said. “They’re great with computers. Jesus, I can barely send an email!” that’s absolute gold.

  2. Eoin Says:

    Thanks Adrian. Yeah, he had a way of looking at things alright!

  3. Lisa Says:

    Facebook add-as-friend suggestions are very odd indeed. I keep being encouraged to add my former HR manager and a work colleague’s pet rabbit as friends.

  4. albinicus Says:

    That facebook add-as-friends thing keeps suggesting i add you Eoin. I dunno maybe it’s a Mayo thing and we prob have a few of the same friends or something. I’ve been tempted but feel I would be crossing some kind of internet line into virtual stalking. Also you’d see how I regularly post up your ‘amusing items I’ve come across’ items (although in fairness I always credit the blog, usually)

  5. raptureponies Says:

    I logged on the other day and had 19 requests from people who I don’t know. Whatever about friend suggestions, who are these weirdos?

  6. Colin Says:

    Have a repeating friend suggestion for someone calling themselves Bagpuss Fluffington who isn’t friends with anyone I know. I fear what our connection might be.

    Also have a long sitting friend request from a guy in Miami who shares my namesake. He is friends with 11 other such men (so far). I call them after their profile photos. Hence the birth of Maternity Ward Colin, Auld Colin, Dirtbike Colin, Black Colin and Acrobat Colin. The day I click “Add” is the day I die a little inside.

  7. Eoin Says:

    @ Albinicu – Add away. Jesus, I have enough “friends” who carpet bomb me with invitations to go to the same club night every single week.

    A man who can get Willie Joe Padden to endorse my website would be welcome addition!

    @ Raptureponies – yeah, I’m always afraid its a friend of a friend, or someone I met out sometime and don’t want to offend. Then I add them and then two seconds later I get an invitation to their weekly club night. You can’t win.

    @ Colin – he’s doing a Dave Gorman on your ass.

  8. El Kid Says:

    I don’t have a Facebook page. And after reading this, God I feel like such a loser.

  9. Eoin Says:

    I could have sworn I remember being Facebook friends with you, no? Did you used to have one??

  10. El Kid Says:

    Well I might have had one at some point in the far off past. Damn youthful folly.

  11. Eoin Says:

    You’re an idiot in other words.

  12. El Kid Says:

    No I’m not.

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