By Michael Lewis
While avoiding all television coverage of the Michael Jackson funeral (seriously, this has to be on EVERY channel?), I stumbled across this:
Apparently those clever people who run the BBC decided it would be fun to give a 13 year old an original Sony Walkman to see what he would make of it.
The kid walked around for a week with it and was mightily confused, as were most of his friends, who had only seen iPods. My favorite part was when the kid said he figured out how to make it “shuffle” by “imply by holding down “rewind” and releasing it randomly – effective, if a little laboured.”
This story makes me sad, as did the time earlier this year when my wife came home from teaching fourth grade one day and said one of her kids had stumbled across a word he didn’t know in a reading comprehension exercise. The word was, of course, Walkman. He’d never seen it before in his life.
Oh well. I guess how that British kid feels is typical, kind of like how confused I was the first time my parents told me that in the “olden days,” you had to call an operator on the phone and asked to be connected to someone.
Still, next time I go through my old childhood stuff I’m going to see if I can find my last Walkman, an Aiwa. I’m sure there’s still a good Debbie Gibson or Billy Joel tape stuck in there somewhere.