Or why there has never been a better time to be getting on a bit.
There are times when it feels just, ever so slightly, too much hard work to keep up with the latest technology. When you crave for three TV channels and the wireless. When you yearn for a time when popular culture meant listening to the top 40 on a Sunday night and a mobile phone was one with a long cable.
Today the things that a mobile phone can do seem like witchcraft to the generation that had to wait a week for Boots to develop our photos.
It’s true there are some elements of being middle aged that are apparently unavoidable – appreciating well-kept garden, delight at the realisation that you never need trouble a night club again, and elastic waists. But there are others, like refusing to learn new ways of doing things and considering that young people – and their high-tech ways – are a different species, that are simply not acceptable.
Change is the only constant. Wasn’t that what someone clever said? Maybe not, but it’s true. Therefore, we haven’t really got any option but to keep up with it all. At least professionally. In your private hours, you can don a crinoline and do your embroidery by the light of a candle if that’s what floats your boat.
At work, though, if we oldies can manage to keep a grip of the changes and what they mean then that, combined with a little bit of the wisdom we may have acquired, will serve us well.
Put it this way, back when I was doing journalism training we still had use of carbon paper, rang newspaper libraries for facts and find a phone box to call the copy-takers. Customer journeys were on the bus, web devs were spiders and social media was a piss up in the press bar.
One day, the millennials – the ones who roll their eyes when we don’t know our hashtags from our filters – will look back on with fond nostalgia on the days when Facebook ruled the roost and you had to click and tap on things with your actual fingers.
Meantime, it’s ok to know that there are always going to be new things but that the lessons from life can also be applied to almost anything. This means that we shouldn’t leave the exciting innovations to the youngsters, instead, we should get them to show us how they work and see if we can’t get together to make it even more useful. We know a lot of stuff they don’t but, if we’re not careful, they’ll dismiss us as boring old farts – it cuts both ways.
This video made by 4imprint makes the point really well.