So I called my parents yesterday.
Me: Hi Dad! Can I talk to Mom?
Dad: Amanda, what do you know about this Storm card game?
Me: A card game? Like Magic: The Gathering?
Dad: Yeah, that's it!
Me: Where did you hear about Magic?
Dad: This kid at work was talking to me and he was explaining how he was building a deck.
Now, my Dad is from a generation where men made stuff using their hands, their own tools and it was practically a sin to pay a professional for anything. He's an electrical engineer who always believed he was also an electrician/plumber/exterminator. I remember a fun day when our kitchen floor flooded because he was trying to fix the dishwasher. Or that time he tried to de-freeze the roof with hot water from the faucet. But my Dad was always very good at math, and when it came to structures, he knew his shit. When I was but a babe, he built an extension onto the house that was our "family room." Later on, he built the sturdy decks onto the side of my parents' house and to this day we spend most of our warmer months hanging out on them.
So when this kid started talking about decks, my father thought he was in his element (pun intended).
Dad: I couldn't hear him so well because of the machines in the room. I asked him what kind of wood he was using and he yelled something about electric bolts...
At this point I am in tears. The perfect confusion of the event had me literally on the floor, my father on the other line huffing with annoyance at my screams of laughter. The thing that really got me was that two different conversations were taking place and for at least a few seconds, neither of them realized what the other was talking about.
These two men, two generations, tried and failed (hilariously) to communicate. It makes me wonder what will happen when I am an older person, still talking about blogs and twitters, while kids 20+ years younger snicker because I don't have my telepathic AOL implant. Will we still be able to talk or relate? Should we even bother? Of course we should. After all and sooner than I like to think, I'll be in the same boat as my parents are now. I like to use instances like this one to peer into my future once in a while, and I'm looking forward to my own geriatric faux pas.
I'll bet that kid got some solid advice about sanding and cement foundations, though.