Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Just What is a Victrola?

Two weekends ago, we had a floor full of college students up to our little cabin at 49 Degrees North and we were talking about technology and the changes in technology. Imagine that! So somehow we got on the subject of downloading music and watching videos which then led to how easy it is to copy due to the evolution of technology and how portable technology is today.

I went on to tell them that they didn't invent the mixed CD because I was doing that in the 1970s with my little cassette player plugged into my radio or my stereo output jacks when I was in 7th grade. Not that I invented it either, but like most kids, I used to call Sunshine Shelly on KJRB, request a song and then record it when she played it on the radio. AM by the way! I went on to say that prior to tape players, it was much more difficult because people had record players and you couldn't really record from record to record. This led to my story I share with all of classes every semester about my oldest daughter, who was 12 at the time was asked to dust the victrola one Saturday morning. She replied, "What's the victrola?" I then pointed out her great grandfather's victrola in the corner of the living room which was passed down to her father. Of course she got the family history lesson as well. She then said, "Oh, I thought that was the big CD player."

The students listened to the story because what else are you going to do when you are trapped in a one bedroom cabin with an educator who truly feels the need to educate and who is giving you free room at board near a ski resort? Besides that, these are really polite young adults who still respect their elders. At the end of the story they too asked, "What is a victrola?" Fortunately, I have a smartphone and I could have Googled it to show them, but in the end all I had to do was explain to them that it was an old fashioned record player that you had to crank to play. After which I asked them, "Do you know what a record player is?"

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