True stories with a twist!


Here he is; the man of the hour. The graduate. Our grandson.

Matt just graduated from Cornell and is now a Data Scientist. We are proud, proud, proud.IMG_0050

But I wish I had some idea what that means. It isn’t that Matt hasn’t explained what a Data Scientist is or what they do. It’s just that sometimes we don’t speak the same language. Vocabularies are different and so are Expressions young people use. Even computers speak different languages. College courses exist, dealing with computer languages or “coding.”

When I graduated from high school I remember the wise words the speaker said. He told our class that by the time we graduated from college there would be jobs available in areas of society that don’t even exist yet.

Of course we thought that we were so sophisticated that it was impossible for anything to develop that we didn’t already know about and understand. 

But that was before computers. And that was before cell phones. And that was before cordless appliances. 

Everything has changed. Even music. I used to be able to switch on the car radio and hear the swooning voice of Eddie Fisher singing, “Oh My Papa.” We have gone from listening to music on records, advancing to tapes, then CDs, to listening to music on cell phones. That’s why new car models don’t offer tape decks and CD players. Just turn on your cell phone and listen to your choice of any manner of music.

I take modern life and its conveniences so for granted, that I don’t remember what wasn’t here before. Things are changing so amazingly fast.

Last week we stopped at a convenience store on our way to Ithaca NY for graduation. There were no salespeople and no cashiers in the store. 

We selected our snacks and proceeded to a machine. There we scanned the bar code on the package and entered either a credit card or cash. We used a credit card, and the machine registered the amount and printed a receipt. The next person paid in cash. The change for his purchase was sent down a chute and into a container for him to retrieve. I was amazed by this development in devices. It seemed to me that humans are on their way to being non-essential for transacting the normal business of buying and paying for merchandise. 

Banking’s ATM machines are the models that retail stores are following. 

Children will no longer be taught to politely say,”Thank you, Maa’m.”

In the future they will say, “Thank you, hunk of metal!” or “Thank you, machine.”

When I told Matt that when I was a child we didn’t own a TV, he was incredulous. How could we have lived without a television set? And only one car for the whole entire family? Barbaric!

Perhaps some day his own children will be incredulous when he tells them that his family, considering the level of technology by that time, didn’t even own their own rocket ship.

Comments on: "GRADUATION" (38)

  1. I am SO happy for him. Living in a computer age, the world surely needs people like him. As for you, my dear friend, I pray to live as long as you have. My neighbour is in his eighties and still drives a Volkswagen beetles (Type 1, I think). He still maintains it’s the best car on the road, and I think I know why.

    • Uzo, you never can believe the numbers when you talk about your age. I don’t look, feel or act like an old person, but the numbers are startling. Just take care of yourself and you will thrive into your older years!

  2. Congrats on Matt’s graduation! You may not understand “Data Scientist” (neither do I) but you understand data and I bet Matt is proud of you too. After all, not every grandma has a blog!

    • Thanks for the encouragement, Lisa. To be honest, I never mentioned to Matt that I wrote a blog. Hmmm; do you really think he’d be impressed with this accomplishment of his grandmother? Maybe I should mention it some day…

  3. Always happy to see our young people entering this new world of technology. It amazes me how much has changed in my lifetime and I know it is minuscule compared to what the future holds. Wish I could stay around to have my own rocket ship!

    • Well Bev, take your multivitamins every morning and exercise. Maybe then you will be around to have your own Rocket Ship. I hope so because I plan to, and would love to have some fellow bloggers to write to.

  4. Adrianne Bendich said:

    Matt resembles Harvey, and looks elated!!! Mazel tov to all. All of the new electronic things are the progress built on past educational opportunities. The core is still built on family!! Thanks for sharing, Adrianne and David

  5. Congratulations to Matt in entering the world of being a Data Scientist, I wont ask as the answer to what a Data Scientist Data’s it will probably require much research and confusing to this old brain.
    Kind regards.

  6. I find myself smiling and embracing the idea that the future belongs to the young. They are bright and ready for the challenges! Congratulations to Matt, and although I’m a stranger to him, I really am wishing him well. I’ve put a lot of my faith on young men and women just like him. 🙂

  7. In 2012 we were proud to sit in the stands for our granddaughter’s graduation from the Air Force Academy. With nine grandchildren those special feelings have continued at Salisbury University, Champlain College and Mississippi State University. Others are either attending or will attend a higher education location soon. There are also four greats in the mix, I doubt we shall make those treks on graduation day. Congratulations to Matthew as he moves forward in his life. We know the feeling.

  8. Congratulations to your grandson. I can imagine it was a very proud moment for both parents and grandparents.

    I was at the front end of data mining back in the 1990s – writing algorithms to organize and analyze patterns in the data. I can’t even begin to imagine how far this area has developed in the past 20+ years.

    Looking back on the progression of change over our lives is quite astonishing. A few years ago I spent a day going through a ‘mindful’ exercise of trying to look at my day through the eyes of 16-year-old me. Virtually everything I touched was a ‘miracle’.

  9. Congratulations, Ronnie. I think I’ve figured out what a data scientist is….a scientist that works with data. What area of science and what data I have no idea!

    What do you think kids today would say if they knew we used to have party lines on our phones. If you had an emergency you had to ask the parties using the phone line to hang up so you could call out. Unbelieveable!

  10. We celebrated with my grandson as he graduated with his degree – Architecture. How proud we are of these young men going forth into an unknown world.
    Self promotion here –

  11. jnlmurphy said:


  12. Oh wow!! Congatulations, you have a Data Scientist!! That’s very cool. I’m pretty sure he is going to do well in life. 😉

  13. It is amazing that our grandchildren will experience what we could never dream of. I was 15 when we were given our first TV set. Like Roger Miller we had “no pool, no phone, no pets”. No car either. I’m sure you could add to the list 🙂

  14. Helen Carey said:

    You really have to have a sense of humor to cope with all of this. Don’t you sometimes feel you are in a time warp (whatever that is ) when you hear your Grandchildren speak about technology. Keep smiling !

  15. Gaye Fulton said:

    What a handsome young man! Clearly takes after his Grandparents. Congratulations to Matt and all the family. Great blog too. Gaye

  16. Congratulations. Ronnie. Your grandson looks very happy. So what is a Delta scientist anyway?

  17. Congrats on your grandson’s graduation. Agree that it’s hard to relate to some job descriptions and also the pace of technology.

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