I grew up knowing that # is the pound sign. Apparently some morning a person woke up and decided my pound sign needed a new name and christened it a hashtag. Amazingly it took. How much longer before someone messes around with my asterisk (*) or maybe even my ampersand (&)? Things are changing fast and it's not easy to keep up. My father has been dead for 26 years and I sometimes wonder how a conversation would go with him after all these years and changes.

Hi Loren, it's been a while. What's new with you?

Well Dad, I picked up a used Blackberry for $20.

$20? Man oh man, when you were a kid you used to go out in the woods and pick all you wanted for free. Prices sound crazy now days.

Dad, I don't think you understand. I wanted one because I now have bluetooth.

Oh my, that sounds bad. I'd suggest you get at least two estimates before you have it fixed. Those dentists' prices can vary quite a bit. I once had Pink Eye. Did you know that?

Actually these are computer terms. It's seems like I spend most of my work day moving a mouse around.

So you must work in a lab or vet's office?

Dad, we aren't getting anywhere with this conversation. Let's try sports.


Let's see, the Gophers didn't have much of a season. The basketball team finished 13th in the Big Ten this past season.

Pardon? I thought you said 13th. And in the Big Ten.

Right, 13th or second to last.

So if there are 14 teams in the Big Ten. I suppose there are 14 in the Pac 10 as well?

No dad, the Pac 10 has 10 teams.

I'm confused. So then I suspect the Big 12 has 12.

Nope. 10.

Loren, I was gonna ask you if you still watch those Abbott and Costello videos I got you for Christmas, but I think I know the answer to that one.

  • I wonder what my late father would say if he saw this "Green" bag.

    Green Bag

    Dad, I hesitate in showing you this.

  • I suspect the "See Owner's Manual" inside my cap refers to the lifetime warranty. I checked online and learned the Lifetime Warranty is for only 3 years? What in the world is going on?

    My hat label

    I suppose I could tell him that we're more advanced and smarter today, but this label inside my hat would blow that out of the water. A cap with an owner's manual?