The Mom was, before my holiday trip home, bursting with excitement to show off her new, modern kitchen technology.
“Taps with sensors!” she cried, as though a field of roses had been placed at her unsightly feet. “You don’t even have to turn the tap on! I mean, can you believe it?”
Sadly, I could. And I could also see where this was going.
The Mom is not one to wilfully thwart progress (unlike myself who dislikes all things new primarily because they are new and I am therefore not used to them, which is another way of saying they must be bad). In fact, she is keen to embrace it, and also to squee with joy upon having embraced it. She is, as they say, a Silver Surfer, and though she isn’t quite at the stage where she considers her computer to be a natural extension of herself (obviously, she does not have a laptop) but she’s getting there.
I had no idea this love of all things new and tech would spread to the kitchen. Because frankly, I don’t know how to trouble-shoot a faucet that’s lost its mind.
Here’s the thing: new tech is great, but when it breaks, we’re all screwed. And people, like The Mom, forget that things break when they’re shiny and new and still working. I however, being the Head Doomsayer of the family, can only look at these things and wonder how we’ll function once they break.
Imagine a day in the not so distant future, when The Mom waves her hands under her fancy new tap and it doesn’t work. She’ll be there for ages, flapping and futzing with the stupid thing, in no way ready to relent and turn it on like a normal person. This would, of course, go on over a course of days, while The Mom became sadder and sadder, until eventually she became so deflated that she would have to announce the fancy tap had been relieved of its super powers.
I had the chance to play with this fancy new tap in person over the holidays and it does appear to already have developed a mind of its own, turning on and off as and when it pleased. I took this as a dark sign. Not that it was about to break, on the contrary: that it was the beginning of the time when all the things become sentient and we’re all well and truly stuffed.
The Mom of course, doesn’t see the tap as a harbinger for dark days to come. But then, she doesn’t know what other things in the home she can get that are all fancy and high-tech. Like light bulbs that can sense when you’ve fallen and can’t get up again. And are then hardwired, somehow, magic, witchery, the internet, whatever, to a phone line, and will call for help. Are these lightbulbs a dark sign? Obviously, but they may also have their uses, not the least of which being if The Mom carries on wearing those ridiculous high heels in the house. She is without a dog to send for help, and so the lightbulbs might be all that stands between her and certain death.