Thursday, August 15, 2013

remember, the teenage years are for learning

This is a story about someone that I know.

Someone who has a 13-year-old son and is married to a man who enjoys Do-It Yourself projects around the home.  So much in fact, that he demolished his master bathroom and decided to renovate it, himself.  Eighteen months ago. The renovations aren't complete yet, but from what I understand, they're very close.

So my friend bought her son a new laptop for Christmas.  For the past few months, he's been playing with his computer and learning more about the ins and outs of technology and how e-mail works and the vast wealth of information there is to learn in this digital age.  And one day, he decided to make a movie on his computer. Just a simple movie that any 13-year-old boy might make ... one in which he makes silly faces and goofy noises and things of that nature. However, during the course of this movie making, he gets a case of the munchies and decides that he's going to get up, walk away from his computer, and go in to the kitchen and have himself an afternoon snack.

While he is in the kitchen making a snack, his father - who has been required to use a bathroom in a different part of the house whilst his renovations continue - took a shower in the room immediately adjacent to the room where his son was making his very first movie. The father, as it happens, is a very proud and confident man that shuns the use of a towel and instead, prefers to "air dry."

Especially on hot summer days after he's been working in the yard.   

Now, just imagine that this freshly showered and air-drying father, departs from the bathroom and walks through the room where his son was, moments earlier, making his very first movie.  And let's assume that he walks directly towards the computer but doesn't notice it. And as he exits the room, his 13-year-old son is re-entering the room with a snack in hand and says something funny like, "Uh, Dad, I think you lost your pants..." The son resumes his moviemaking and once finished, decides to upload it to YouTube.  And then, he links it to his newly created Facebook account.

A day or two later, when my friend is at work, she is approached by a co-worker who has a son in the same grade as her son.  And that co-worker says to my friend, "I think you need to see something on the internet...." And then she proceeds to show my friend a video that her 13-year-old son had made.  At first, my friend is very concerned that her son uploaded a video of himself to YouTube and created a Facebook page without her knowledge.

When she starts to tell her co-worker how she's going to set firmer boundaries about computer usage, her co-worker says, "Oh, just wait. You might want to sit down for this next part.... " And as my friend settles in to a chair, she watches her son get up and walk away from the computer moments before her air-drying husband .... sans any clothing ... walks directly in to the frame.


(I'm very impressed that my friend remained cognizant enough to safely leave the office - drive home - delete the video off YouTube and Facebook and disable her son's accounts - without disabling his fingers.)

You see, it would appear that her 13-year-old son forgot to pause or stop the movie before he went to go get his afternoon snack. And then, he didn't exactly review it before he uploaded it to YouTube. I think it's safe to say, this boy who is extremely bright and will likely reach Eagle Scout within the next two years, never watched his very first movie the whole way through.   I'm just hopeful that he'll have his computer back by the time he goes to goes to college. Until then, I'd say this is a good lesson learned.

Quality Assurance / Quality Control. QA/QC, it's for you -  it's for me.