It was one of those father / son conversations that fathers are inclined to indulge in from time to time and that are usually invoked by some or other important milestone or ritual.
The ritual in question? My youngest son beginning his University career. Well let’s hope it isn’t a ‘career’ but rather a short stopover on the way to bigger things!
The parental wisdom I was freely dispensing had to do with the fact that at University he would make new friends and it was most likely that these newly acquired friends, would be the ones that would last a lifetime…unlike his school friends. “Why’s that?” he asked, somewhat puzzled.
“Well” I said, “once you exit school your generation tends to funnel into society at large and you will end up losing contact with them,” before going on to add some personal experience to the wisdom.
“But of course we’ll stay in touch…we’ve got Facebook” came the instantaneous retort in which I sensed a thinly masked tone of exasperation, maybe tolerance.
Immediately I realize the error of my ‘wisdom’ and the pitfall that had been my ‘experience’. He’s right. His generation will stay in touch effortlessly and so, in one small matter, technology has again changed the way things will be.
How could I have been so stupid? Oh, and one last thing: be aware of ‘your experience’. In a world changing at the pace it is, experience is not all it’s made up to be.