Smart phones can be the great equalizer among a wide range of age groups. As long as you’re spry enough to scroll, humans from 3 to 93 can stay connected to a world of digital happiness.
Best case scenario? People from all walks of life have an opportunity can share ideas and cross paths.
Worst case? Lack of hipness leads to an awkward situation. Which is essentially how a Lyft ride went for me last week.
We were on our way to a live show. On a Monday. Balcony seats and earplugs aside, we were ready to rock out like a couple of twenty-somethings. We got in the car and the small talk began.
“Where you guys headed?” asked the Lyft driver.
“We’re gonna go see a band,” I responded, assuming he’d probably never heard of the headliner.
“I love music, but I’m mostly into oldies…” he trailed off with a hint of shyness in his voice.
Surprised by the combination of a young guy and the unexpected genre, I responded enthusiastically. “Right on, man. Me, too. I’m a big Elvis fan. Carl Perkins? Chuck Berry? Even stuff like the Everly Brothers and Patsy Cline. Wow! So cool.”
There was a long pause. As if the poor guy was suddenly deprived of oxygen.
“Oh, well, I didn’t mean oldies like that, I meant like Prince and Michael Jackson…those oldies.”
No one in the car said much after that. Trying to back track and establish any common ground at that point seemed like more work than it was worth for momentary bond. A few days later, I celebrated my 39th with a little Elvis on the turntable. Some true oldies for a guy who’s almost old enough to know the difference, I thought about the kid driving the car and adding some Prince to my vinyl collection.