Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Teaching Your Mother How To Skype When She's Halfway Around The World And Using Gmail Chat For The First Time: A Play In One Act

  me: Hey, Mom, we can video chat with gmail!  Let's just do that since the Skype thing didn't work out.me: Did you get that?Hello???
8:28 AM Debbie: Today?
 me: Just now.
  It'll be right up there in your gmail.  I'll send it again.
  Melanie is inviting you to use Google voice and video chat. Get started at http://www.google.com/chat/video
  I just did it again.
8:30 AM
 Mom, you have to close your browser and re-open.
8:32 AM Debbie: Okay
 me: Melanie is inviting you to use Google voice and video chat. Get started at http://www.google.com/chat/video
8:36 AM OK, Mom, click on settings up in the upper right corner, and then click the "Chat" tab.
  Make sure your video is enabled
8:37 AM Debbie: We are lo0king.
8:39 AM me: Can you guys see yourselves?
 Debbie: no
 me: Did you go under the chat tab?
  And test the video & audio?
8:40 AM Debbie: do not see test
8:41 AM me: ?
  Under "Settings" and "Chat"?
  Are you sure you installed the application?
  The whole first section is called "Voice and video chat"
  And there's a little black window.
  "verify your settings"
 Debbie: not sure, it asked us ssto save a file.
8:42 AM me: Did you save it?
 Debbie: yes
 me: Ok, do me a favor
  See my name over on the left?
  It has a green video light next to it.
8:43 AM Click on my name and select "More" and if you've installed the video function, you'll be able to click something that says "video chat with melanie"
8:44 AM I think you guys need to click the video link again and try installing and make sure to watch all the instructions, maybe?
8:45 AM Debbie: the save file request has been preformed five times.
 me: Then another screen comes up.
  Are there any other directions you need to follow?
8:46 AM After download you sometimes need to click on the file to activate.
 Debbie: after we save the file there are no other instructions.
 me: Oy.
  And what happened with Skype?
8:49 AM Hello?  Hellooooo?
8:50 AM I just looked it up: you have to have an Intel-powered Mac to use gmail video chat.
8:51 AM So there goes that.
  Can you tell me what happened with Skype?  Why didn't it work?
  It's supposed to me ibook-friendly.
  Are you there still?
  Hello?
8:54 AM Hellooooo?
  Ding?
  Dong?Mooooooooooom??8:55 AM Debbie: I think we now have it downoaded
 me: I just read that it will only work for Macs powered with Intel.
  Because of the processing load.
 You have an iBook right?
8:56 AM Debbie: Yes
 me: Yeah, no Intel.
  Wah.
 Debbie: Macbook
 me: Oh!
  Does it have Intel?
  Ask Dad.
 Debbie: ask jeff
8:57 AM me: I think only the Macbook Pros.
 That's why it's not working.
  I curse you, Steve Jobs!
  (But not really, because you have cancer.)
 Debbie: should we try skype?
 me: Yes!  PLEASE.
  Did you load Skype?  I thought Skype "crashed your email"?
  It's super, super easy.
8:58 AM Debbie: We will try, should we go to the internet
 me: You're already on the internet.  Just go to skype.com and or follow that invite I sent you to
8:59 AM It's super-duper simple.
9:01 AM Debbie: we are woking on it.
 me: OK! Go, team.I really need this to work, Mom, because Ellie hasn't talked to you in almost two weeks and asked me if you and Dad are dead and she's very suspicious and sulky.Hello?Hello?
(Picture courtesy of my mom and dad, Debbie and Mark, who are having a totally awesome European adventure for the first time.  Mom is standing outside a little Evangelical church outside Frankfurt where her great-great-great-great-great-great etc. grandfather was christened.  As it turns out, he didn't know how to Skype either.) 

48 comments:

Anonymous said...

I blame CropTop. He is Family Tech Support. There should have been a series of classes before the left to make sure they new what they were doing.

unmitigated me said...

Oh my gosh, you have the patience of a saint. I'd have told the girl they were lost at sea by now.

Kelly said...

You should really consider a second career in call center tech support ;)

J. said...

Oo oo, will you teach my mom to use Skype, Mel? I'd pay you. :-)

Emily said...

Love: "Do me a favor"...

Merrilee said...

Melanie, I'll go to Frankfurt and help them if you can convince my dad to use a computer! If anyone could do it, you could!!

Melanie said...

Croptop Dickie is always, ALWAYS the one to blame, yes.

Violet said...

I feel your pain. My parents cannot seem to understand that instant messaging is a conversation, not an email. They send quick, abrupt IM messages that alway end with "Love, Mom" or "More later - Dad".

Stu said...

Too bad you were not actually talking to her on the phone so you could have used an East-Indian accent...

Kimberly said...

Omygoodness. That was hysterical. Seriously. That could be the conversation with my inlaws OR my parents.

The oddest is when, for some reason, we can't get skype to work for audio, but it has video. So, I have my TELEPHONE, for pete's sake, on speakerphone and we are looking at each other and I have the two little boys jumping all over me looking at Grampa. But Grampa has an old rotary dial phone by his computer. Seriously. So, not speaker phone on his end. So he and Gramma are staring at the computer screen with their heads together hugging the telephone receiver between them.

You have never seen such an awkward thing in your life. Except maybe my 17 mo who takes that opportunity to yank up my shirt and start to nurse.

Emily said...

I'm so so happy you're updating your blog again. With the shuttering of the Colony, I'm-a need regular Melanie fixes. (Yay!)

I hope your parents figured out Skype.

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

My SIL has forbidden us from buying any technology for her parents--since we are in California and she is just down the street she is tech support--and tired of it!

Melanie said...

Stu, this is awkward because I actually do have an East-Indian accent.

Ms. Lea 李女士 said...

OMG! I just did this with my mom as well! I too figured Skype would be so much easier :D

Very Mary said...

Frankly, that conversation would have had my mother in tears.

Christy said...

The title alone had me giggling....

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You're already on the internet.

Hahahahahahahahahaha!

Suzanne said...

I've missed you, Melanie! Glad to see you're back, even if Ellie does suspect something dire has happened to your parents.

dkuroiwa said...

hahahahaha!! i laugh because this could very well have been MY mother (the one who, when she first started the whole internet thing didn't want to e-mail me in her morning--which was my late at night--she was afraid it would wake me up!!!)
aah, yes...our moms. you do know that evrything they do, that makes us crazy, is pay-back for something!

yogurt said...

So... no job in India for you.

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This is too funny! It definitely sounds like a conversation with my Mom. Hope they got it figured out and you were able to speak to them.
So glad you are back! You've been missed! :-)

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wowzers! you're really getting the Anonymous adverts too eh?
You did a great job with your mom. My parents are quite technically advanced, but Mum won't have any friends on facebook but her kids, since she accidentally posted a 'message' on someone's 'wall'. Fortunately it was a nondescript one, but it put her off. too bad.
I also was tech support. And the guys in New Delhi saved my butt over a Quickbooks dilemma, so gotta give them props. (Thank you Rashed)

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That is fantastic that taught your mom how to Skype. My grandfather and I email each other, he lives in Holland. I do not know why I never though doing the video chat.

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