Yes: I’ve hauled out my soapbox again for another rant. This time it’s the elderly Luddites, who have incurred my electronic wrath. And I can be a rudely wrathful as I like, as it’s a 100% certainty they will never read this.
It so happens I co-ordinate two social groups, and wishing to make my life as easy as possible, I communicate with the one group via WhatsApp, and the second group via e-mail. What could be quicker, cheaper and easier?

Except that in both groups there is one – always just that one person! – who, for whatever unfathomable reason, refuses to use a cellphone, and if perchance they actually own an ancient, brick-sized Nokia, it’s operating system can’t cope with the WhatsApp programme. No, they say vaguely, I don’t have that – whatchcallit? All my grandkids use it, but it’s not for me. Actually, they add, in confessional mode, I usually keep my cellphone switched off.  Then please explain to me why they continue to give out their number?

You are probably reading this and shaking your head in disbelief. But I swear to you, that’s a direct quote from one old dear.

And the other group of Luddites refuse to go anywhere near a PC or smartphone, and never, but never ever, communicate by e-mail. They might, very reluctantly, divulge their nearest and dearest’s e-mail address and hesitatingly say: “Well, I suppose you could send me an e-mail to my son’s e-mail address, but he’s so busy, I don’t know …” and of course, any e-mail you do send to Sonny Boy never gets passed on to his dear old Mum. Grrrrrrhhhh.

So what? you’re thinking. Where’s the problem? The problem, dear Reader, is that these Luddites constantly complain : But nobody ever told ME the date had changed / the meeting will be two hours later / the venue has changed / our monthly meeting is cancelled . Nobly refraining from leaping up and throttling them, you reply through gritted teeth: Well: if you had WhastApp /email then you’d be up to speed, wouldn’t you?

Thanks for reading this. I feel better now I’ve got that off my chest!




  1. the bacon bits in the salad bowl of life

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Makes me wonder what’s going to be around in about 20 years that I am not going to be able to fathom – or even want to! (If I’m around)!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I have also had similar issues when coordinating get togethers.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Yea! Please get a life! Or decent cellphone!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Haha, my mum is the same. Absolutely refuses to get a mobile phone or the internet. X

    Liked by 2 people

  6. The worst are those who HAVE an email address but then say blithely,”Oh, I only open t once a week or so!” Emails should come with warning that they need to be looked at once a day.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Charlotte

    My much younger neighbour came with me to the store,sat patiently with me explaining and re-explaining and getting me to practice . Now I am functional – and even send pictures to my computer! . I still battle a bit, but without her, I stood no chance.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. They’re annoyingly stubborn!

    See you —

    Neil Scheinin

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Years ago, before I had a cellphone, I remember a friend encouraging me to buy one, ‘Not for you, but for all your friends.’ she said. I got one straight away. What I’ve learnt is that technology benefits oldies more than any other group.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. This cracked me up, Alison. I know exactly what you mean; I have had family members who for years resisted getting email or using cellphones… How else are we supposed to communicate given that the post office has become so unreliable?

    But I suppose, at least there is still the landline for phoning (though not emailing) – although the new wireless phones, which Telkom is now forcing on everyone because of copper cable theft (thanks, thieves! you’ve no idea what inconvenience and damage you’re causing), resemble smart phones in terms of how you can store numbers etc. There’s a couple of elderly residents at my Mom’s retirement village who have no idea how to install and ‘get them going’, never mind storing numbers or making calls. It’s actually quite simple, but suddenly having to use the ‘green call button’ and the ‘red hangup button’ can be quite bewildering for people with dementia or Alzheimer’s who struggle to learn new things. I spent a couple of delightful hours helping Mom and a fellow resident with their new Telkom handsets.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. It’s not just the oldies that ar frustrating – in two groups I belong to I set up Drop box accounts so we could share info more easily. There always one person who says they don’t know how to access the box despite the multiple times I’ve told them what to do.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. OMG! You hit the nail on the head! And how bloody annoying it is. Using a cell phone or pc and email is not rocket science and as much as I complain about my cell phone, it does keep you up to speed on everything. With the post office in crisis, email allows me to monitor snail mail! My dear, should you jump up and strangle one of those old biddies, I will help you bury the body Xxx

    Liked by 2 people

  13. Elaine Edwards

    I couldn’t agree more, Alison! And it doesn’t depend on age – eighty year olds can be a whiz and those in their sixties sit proudly waving their ancient Nokias about. I have offered to give help if anyone needs it and so far that’s paid off well. My son would chuckle though. He thinks I’m useless. But his wife taught me to “swipe” the phone keyboard which speeds me up terrifically, so now I’m considered an expert. As long as no one asks about an Iphone. I can only use the Samsung!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I can totally empathise with you. I am in the same position. However, I am going to try and get this lady into communicating via mobile somehow.

    Liked by 1 person

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