Momma’s Air(s)

For her 75th Birthday, we migrated my Mom from a first generation iPad to an iPad Air. 

Everything is pretty much in the same place, there is an added front camera, the device is a bit lighter, the case is different. I made sure all the screens looked the same as the prior device, deleting any apps she will never use. 

Her Kindle app is exactly where we left it so she could have access to her library without any major hiccups. 

Finally, I introduced her to iBooks so we could share Spanish books and I could use some of my gift cards for her book purchases. 

I should have stopped there, but I insisted on introducing her to FaceTime. 

I wish the earth would swallow me whole right now and make me regret my desire to bring my mother into my technology world. 

Instead I am living celluloid hell as I have become an even more neurotic Albert Brooks to my mother’s Debbie Reynolds in the film Mother

I connect to FaceTime and I see her forehead. We have the following exchange in our native Spanish but I translate for my readers…

I can’t see your face. 

I see you. 

Move the screen so I can see your whole face.  You are upside down Mom.

I see you. 

I know Mom, but I can’t see you. 

Why don’t you call me instead?

I am calling you, I simply want to see you. 

How do I hang up?

I’m talking to you

I want to hang up. 

Mom, I can’t see you. You paused me. 

No, I hung up. 

No, you didn’t. We are still speaking.

I can’t see you. 

I can’t see you either. 

How do I hang up? 

Touch the screen. Do you see the red button in the center?


Touch that button. 

It went away. 

Touch the screen again. 

Here it is. Do I touch the red button?

Yes that will hang us up.

Ok. I’m going to touch…

She touched the red button and disconnected our call. 

I call back. 

There it is again, my mother’s wrinkled forehead. The eyeless and mouthless being is speaking to me again and I have resigned myself to being the son of this creature. 

I see you. 

I don’t see you, Mom. 

Why do you need to see me?

It’s called FaceTime, Mom!

Call me instead. I’m going to hang up. How do I hang up?

Touch the screen and touch the red button in the center of the screen. 

You want me to touch the red button?

Yes, Mom. 

I’m touching the red…

She hung up on me again. 

We do this about eight more times until she finally learns to see herself on the screen. I am no longer the child of a mutant as my mother now has eyes and a mouth. 

She still can’t find the red button but we are getting closer. 

I wanted my mother to literally cross generations of technology. Instead, I’m frustrated, she’s frust…

It doesn’t feel good to be left hanging, does it?

Momma on Air makes me feel like she’s dissing me and putting on, well, no pun intended, airs

I wouldn’t know. 

She won’t answer my FaceTime call now.  

Airs indeed. 



4 thoughts on “Momma’s Air(s)

  1. Ok my friend, this is just what the doctor ordered today for me. I found myself laughing outloud as I envisioned this as well as the look on your face as you were trying to walk her through how to do this. It couldn’t have come at a better time for me my friend, I really, really, really needed the levity. Thank you, I love you.

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