"The Question" Every Parent Dreads

So I’m sitting there with my adolescent granddaughter watching the lights on our living room Tree, and she suddenly asks “The Question.”. You know, the one to which grandfathers with gray beards are supposed to have good answers. Not just quick ones or cute ones, but answers both easy to remember and easy to believe.

The question: Why are boys and girls so different and so hard to understand….?

Wiser men with grayer beards have been challenged with that one, and often found wanting. Who was I to assume I could do any better. So I tried a different approach. Instead of simply grappling with life’s big-two [Boy, Girl] I made it the big-three [Boy, Girl, Computer].

Maybe that was skirting the issue, but maybe not. Because whereas there were still only two in the world right up to my time, whoosh there have now been three starting with her time. God may have “made us Man and Woman” back in the Garden, but over the last 25 years there has been wrought an entirely new species. While Man and Woman were “formed from out of the dust of the earth,” Computer has been formed from out of the stardust of Silicon Valley.

Ready or not, Abby dear, you must now and forever share the planet with Computer in order to:

* Communicate [email, facebook, skype]

* Negotiate [markets, funds, trades]

* Educate [Google in the classroom]

* Locate [GPS in our cars and phones]

* Activate [from missiles to drones]

* Procreate [sperm & eggs can now do it without us]

First there was Man; then there was Woman. The two have been trying to co-exist ever since. Now there is Computer. “Abby, if you think it was confusing before, fasten your seat-belt, because your 21st century is going to be a bumpy ride. Starting when the three of you attend the prom….”

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