In looking at all the MSN stories about how we Southerners talk, now I am also seeing  these things about what old people do. Yeah, I do some of them, and yeah, I am old! They don’t have to tell me that. I feel like I am being made fun of for doing things that the younger generation won’t do because they are so tied to their phones. It’s like the person doing the writing wants to negatively widen the generation gap that we all know is already there. And some of those things, even though they have been around a while and don’t involve technology, they still get the job done, thank you very much.

For example, carrying a hanky is a negative thing? How about it’s good manners to not to wipe your runny nose on your sleeve if you have a hanky handy?

Making paper and pen lists instead of using your phone may be old, but so what? It still works.

I know young people see no purpose in family or class reunions, thanks to social media. But actual face to face conversations allow you to rekindle friendships, learn more about people you might have ignored when younger, only to realize they do have something to offer. Or they discover that you have something to offer them. And families: one of these days you might want or need to find family for a variety of reasons, and family reunions are one way to make contact and get family information.

I don’t like carrying a purse, and I’m not real crazy about carrying a billfold, but it doesn’t bother me to have one, and I’d rather carry that than a big old heavy purse. And I have no rationale for this one, other than it’s nice to have a bit of cash rather than charge a $3.00 drink on a credit card!

Visiting old-fashioned libraries was seen as a waste of time. Really? These people may not realize that old-fashioned libraries house more than books and research found on the Internet. And libraries have computers for people use when they do visit one of those old-fashioned places. And sometimes it is nice to actually hold a real book to read from and be able to easily look back at pages already read. I would hate to try to teach a book using a Kindle rather than an actual book. These young people will go to a bookstore; why not a library?

Reading newspapers is something I enjoy. The physical act of browsing through the paper is something I grew up watching my parent do, and I have enjoyed the habit of doing it, too. Yes, I know newspapers are about to be a thing of the past, but I’ll hang onto it a bit longer. Reading a newspaper online just doesn’t feel the same. Sometimes the printed story on paper has more information than a quick Internet story, And when I read an article online with misspelled words and bad grammar, well, the writer loses credibility with me, and the Internet tends to have more of those problems than the articles I read in print.

Which leads me to one of my real pet peeves-using incorrect punctuation and misspelled words. Of course, I  know part of that comes from being one of those stodgy old English teachers!  But texting and computers don’t make it okay to be lazy or sloppy and make unnecessary mistakes. Any many times punctuation makes a huge difference. For example, men tend to think this phrase is punctuated just fine: “A woman without her man is nothing.” But women, on the other hand, would do it this way: “A woman: without her, man is nothing.” Aha! And what about the difference in “Let’s eat, Grandma,” versus “Let’s eat Grandma!” And as for spelling, there really is no excuse for misspellings, thanks to your almighty phone’s/computer’s spell-check. Yes, sometimes it will incorrectly correct a last name or something like that, but it can be a good tool-if you use it. So use it.

And my last point of contention is this silly aversion kids have to using a  map, a real, paper, fold-out road map. I will readily admit that a GPS can be helpful in the city, although it doesn’t always send the driver in the most direct route somewhere, and many times the GPS never gets people to our house correctly; visitors tend to get sent down the road to the wrong house. But for going cross-country or simply getting one’s bearings geographically, a good old road map is the way to go. Look at the big picture; make some decisions for yourself on the route you choose to take. And what about when you lose service or your phone goes dead? What are your options then?

Okay, I will get off my soapbox. I just get aggravated when I see these little articles that demean my old ways and tell me I am antiquated. But that’s another old person trait, right, getting indignant and yammering on about how things have changed and wanting to go back to the old days?

Yep, I’m old!