Tinkerville, Brooklyn | Main | Ears

March 8, 2006

Easy as ABC

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Yesterday evening I packed my knapsack and went on a field trip to the Brooklyn Collection at the Brooklyn Public Library. My goal was to a) check out the folder on the school I am researching and b) find all of the Brooklyn Eagle clippings between 1904 and 1960 that I needed, most likely located on microfiche or "the morgue."

My library trip was the cap to a very technologically embarrassing day. On my way home, I went through all of the items that made me feel like I was crusty and old�or perhaps just ignorant and uninformed�at the ripe age of 28. Here they are for every librarian�s eye rolling pleasure:

Printing things in a college computer lab. You actually get to validate your print jobs in computer labs now. Who knew? Obviously not me, who created a line at the printer while I huffed and puffed and wondered why my paper wasn�t coming out of the machine after the eight print jobs that I had sent trying to get it to work. Right then and there I realized that I had become one of those people who clicks on a computer icon fourteen times instead of just waiting for the application to load. Yep.

Photocopying at the public library. Apparently, my library card is ancient. That is what the librarian told me after I had spent ten minutes swiping my card back and forth through the reader and exclaiming, "Stupid piece of crap, can't the library get some technology that actually works?"

Microfiche. Okay, so microfiche machines have not changed in the ten years that I have spent away from them. Still, it took me about an hour to realize that one must pull the feeder all the way out in order to speed forward and backward. As a result, I have read about 30 years worth of Brooklyn Eagle headlines. Informative but certainly unnecessary.

Conclusion. I am old and it is beginning to show. I shall never mock a technologically slow person again.

No, that is a lie. But I will do it quietly.

Posted by callalillie at March 8, 2006 7:18 AM | Random


I remember in college once sitting in a cafe and watching a teenager try to teach his grandfather how to use his (the grandfather's) new cell phone. It was dually endearing and cringe-inducing to watch. I fear the technologies people will use when we are old and the kids will be like ... "what?!! you don't know how to operate the ______ ?!!! You. Are. Old."

Posted by: yp at March 8, 2006 10:09 AM

I will not mock you due to my formerly debilitating fear of microfilm. I've gotten over it, and now we're great friends.

Posted by: Sally at March 8, 2006 10:42 AM

I still have not figured out how to scan microfilm while it is moving without going completely cross-eyed.

Posted by: corie at March 8, 2006 10:47 AM

not so long ago, i still had the thin white card from the nypl. and when i asked them to change it to a new one, they refused as i still had mine.

Posted by: tien at March 9, 2006 7:44 AM

They told me that I had to renew it or I would not be able to photocopy anything or get onto the internet. You can put $ on your card now, like you can at university libraries. It's pretty convenient.

Posted by: corie at March 9, 2006 8:58 AM

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