OK, I will admit it. I am from the typewriter generation. Those were the days when you had to use some gunk called whiteout to cover your typos, except it didn’t work on the carbon copies hidden beneath the originals. Enough smudges on the carbons and you had to start over. It was usually at this time the typewriter ribbon would jump the traces and get all snarled up, requiring you replace it. That is where the term “ink-stained wretch” originated. My hands would be stained with ink and I would feel wretched about it.

Somewhere along the line, I was introduced to the computer and word processing. No carbon paper required. Thank You-Know-Who. Today, instead of banging out these priceless pearls of prose on a clackety typewriter and then driving the finished product to the editors waiting eagerly at the door to see who I have insulted this week — Chardonnay-sipping liberal weenies or gun-totin’ Bible thumpers — I just push a button. Poof! The stuff gets beamed up to a satellite precisely at the moment it passes over my office and then is zapped down to the MDJ a couple of orbits later. At least, that is how I think it happens. Frankly, I don’t care as long as it doesn’t involved typewriter ribbons.

I am doing my best to keep up with today’s Information Age, but it’s not easy. I have a Twitter account (Eat your heart out, Donald) but I don’t know how to use it. Last I looked, I had 287 Twitters awaiting me but I can’t find them. Same thing with Facebook. I have several hundred requests from people wanting to be my friend on Facebook.

In the first place, I don’t know several hundred people all that well and of the ones I do know, I wouldn’t consider a lot of them friendly. My suspicion is that there is a godless Russian Commie or two in the group trying to influence my vote in the next presidential election. The Commies are still trying to get back at us for making them tear down the Berlin Wall.

I did use Zoom a couple of times until my kids got tired of having to take me through the process step-by-step every time. If you subjected them to truth serum, they would confess with amazement that if I can’t figure out something as simple as Zoom, how was I was smart enough to make a living and support a family? I sometimes wonder myself.

As if all this stuff didn’t already make my head hurt, now I see that the Marietta Daily Journal has started a podcast. Just what I need, something new to learn, as if putting commas in all the right places isn’t hard enough.

Not knowing a podcast from a podiatrist, I made a few discrete inquiries and found a podcast is a digital audio file that can be downloaded to a computer or mobile device. I think that means I can now listen to something akin to talk radio on my laptop or on my cellphone, assuming the battery isn’t dead. (Another thing that drives my kids crazy.)

Among the subjects covered thus far, Cobb County Commission Chair Mike Boyce has talked about keeping the county on an even keel. I asked my pals Barney Funk and Porter Wagnalls the definition of “even keel.” They said that means things are “well-balanced and not likely to change suddenly.” Really? Cobb County? Maybe I need to get out more often.

MDJ Sports Editor John Bednarowski spoke to former Lassiter High School and UGA quarterback Hutson Mason about whether there is going to be a football season because of the current pandemic. I’m not sure I want to know the answer to that one. I am trying to stay on an even keel.

Our senior senator, David Perdue, was interviewed on one of the recent podcasts. I suspect the Soybean Queen, aka Kelly Loeffler, won’t be far behind trying to convince us that despite being wealthier than most developed nations, she is just a plain ol’ country girl who rides a cow to work.

I saw a Letter to the Editor yesterday fussing that Cobb County government should not be giving money to charities and that “Jack and Jill are probably shaking their heads in shame, wherever they may be.” In the first place, the two mules are in Montana or Canada. I get those two places mixed up. Secondly, you can bet they are going to read this and start lobbying to get on an upcoming podcast. I just hope they don’t call and ask me to help. I’m still trying to figure out why anybody would want to be friends with me on Facebook.

On another subject, I am glad to see my longtime sparring partner, Rich Pellegrino, back home and recuperating after a near-fatal experience with COVID-19. We don’t agree on much but we do agree that life is precious. Get well and get that bullhorn ready, Rich. I have missed you.

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You can reach Dick Yarbrough at dick@dickyarbrough.com; at P.O. Box 725373, Atlanta GA 31139; or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/dickyarb.

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