This old dawg is learning new tricks.


Well, I didn’t take a stroll to the Park today because I decided to deal with the new camera … it’s been here since April 18th already.

Two Sundays ago, I cleared an afternoon to read the info and set up the camera, and was quite put off by the large manual, some 113 pages.  Of course, at that time, I just said “ugh” after flipping through quickly.  It turned out that of the 113 pages, half were in Spanish, but still … 66 pages is alot of info to absorb at one time for a small camera.  And besides, when I opened the box up, I discovered no CD, no cable interface cord, and no SIM card.  Well, I had purchased an add-on bundle with a memory card but I was still surprised.  I called up to Best Buy to ask if they had the cord to this model camera – the girl checked and said it was out of stock.  I looked on Canon’s website – also out of stock.  So, essentially I had wasted an hour of my time, and, after discovering none of the familiar comforts of my old Canon digital camera existed in this one, and really put off by the whole disappointing experience, I packed it all up to take it back to Best Buy.

When I returned to Best Buy, I handed over my bag with the camera box and its accompanying bundle items while saying “it is too much camera for me – I really wanted alot of zoom and something fairly simple” (I know I was stumbling a little on the word “simple” since the pair of associates who sold it to me said it was prized for its simplicity and creativity, even shooting on automatic) … well, the sales girl, who was probably in her teens, looked at me like I was a simpleton, heard me out and politely replied “well, it has both those features – this is a great little camera” … to which I responded “well convince me then”  (I am a tough customer).

So, she first proceeded to say I needed no cord and just needed a SIM card reader.  I guess I wore a puzzled expression, so she asked me if I preferred to use the reader on the laptop or get a stand-alone reader, to which I responded “sorry, I don’t know what a SIM card reader is or if I have one or not” all the while kind of lowering my head and whispering while wanting to just cower into a corner.

Some 45 minutes later, I left with a tutorial under my belt and a brand-new $9.00 gizmo in my Best Buy bag.

Finally, this morning I sat down to deal with the new camera and all its paraphernalia.

It took two hours to charge the &^%$ thing.  Luckily, I plugged it in before I had breakfast, then glanced over and the light was still orange, so I had a second, then a third cup of coffee.  I reasoned that reading the directions didn’t help much if you couldn’t turn the power button on.

I drained my last cup of coffee and decided I could get the camera gear all ready.

First, I had to read the directions for the SIM card reader and set it up – okay, that was easy enough, but it only had one small piece of paper which served as directions, and suggested that to save the trees, more info could be found online at the manufacturer’s site.  No further instructions needed – thankfully.

Then, I had to put the  SIM card into the camera.  Well, that would have been a piece of cake, except that it took me 20 minutes to open the package to extricate that little plastic memory card.  It was not even clamshell packaging, just sandwiched in between two pieces of cardboard.  Was there some special secret to getting to it?  While I attempted to rip and pinch and cut open the cardboard, I griped and grumbled about why it was not included with and already inside the camera anyway?  Finally, beads of sweat on my forehead, and amidst shreds of paper littering my feet and the floor, I triumphantly removed it from its wrapper and popped it into the camera posthaste.  Whew!

Finally the green light came on and the camera was charged.

Figuring I’d start out simple, and ease into the task at hand, I decided to connect the wrist strap.  Baby steps, right?  I took the strap out of the little bag thinking ‘this’ll be easy’ which quickly turned to ‘hmmm, where do I attach it though?’   Thinking it nonsensical to need to consult the manual  for the wrist strap, I flipped through page after page anyway, but there was nothing on how to attach it to the camera.  Big sigh.  So, I looked at the camera again, this time annoyed that Canon obviously thought it was an easy enough “install” not to include it in the big fat manual.  Nope, I couldn’t figure it out.  So, in desperation, I looked through the manual again.  Success – I finally found a blurb which said “download the manual at the Canon site to see how to attach the wrist strap” … really?!  Sigh.

I knew then I was in big trouble if I was already dogged by this digital dilemma and feeling the need to consult Cliff Notes to operate the camera.

Grumbling some more, I decided to deal with this small potatoes wrist strap task later and turned the camera on.   Woo hoo – lots of noises … a bunch of bells and whistles and I set to work on configuring the date info and location (New York?), which proved to be a 15-minute task.  I was nowhere close to begin taking pictures.

I noted the serial number and hopped onto the Canon site to register the camera as well as for the wireless method to upload the pictures “magically” to a special Canon gateway site.

I typed in the required info and got to the e-mail address … the computer did an auto-complete then they wanted a second e-mail address verification.  No problem – I retyped my e-mail address, the same one I’ve had since I got my first computer in 2000, and which I’ve typed out a gazillion times.  However, it rejected my second e-mail address, though it was fine with it a mere minute before.  Again – really?!

I had to log out and start back over from scratch.  Annoyed, I typed quickly and the e-mail address took this time thankfully, but as I pressed “submit” I saw my home state was “Minnesota” – not “Michigan”… oops, too late to fix it as it flew off the screen into cyberspace.  I had to repeat the process one more time to register my correct address.   Of course, there was no “contact me” to leave a message to destroy the Minnesota address, just a long list of FAQs to scroll through.

I could feel a colossal headache coming on.

I perused the wireless gateway information and decided that I’d do a Scarlett O’Hara – and save that task for another day.  My head was already swamped with details and I’m really sure I like the download method better.

My prior camera had a viewfinder and this one is a point-and-shoot.  Because I don’t own a smartphone, this new way of taking a picture without the “I spy with my little eye” method kind of threw me momentarily.  Well, I don’t really feel I’m a digital dunce,  and, while I don’t profess to be the bee’s knees, when I reviewed my pictures, I had a half-dozen shots of my knees.  There was one of my wrist and the ceiling as well.  Of course, then I had to read up on how to delete ‘em all.

So, I got up and walked around the house while  practicing zooming in and out on the corner cabinet, the duck decoys in the kitchen and my messy dresser, feeling a little stupid, and wondering who will be my first real moveable subject?  Buddy?  The geese or their goslings?  The squirrel as he tries to scale my leg?

Oh wait – I forgot to learn how to shoot a video, and I promised Buddy he’d be the star of the show.  I’ll target that lesson for a rainy day and when my comfort level is high with this newfangled apparatus  … or at the end of this year – whatever comes first.

Enough of this digital debacle for today – practice makes perfect, so it might be awhile yet ‘til I’m a hot dog with this new camera.

About Linda Schaub

This is my first blog and I enjoy writing each and every post immensely. I started a walking regimen in 2011 and decided to create a blog as a means of memorializing the people, places and things I see on my daily walks. I have always enjoyed people watching, and so my blog is peppered with folks I meet, or reflections of characters I have known through the years. Often something piques my interest, or evokes a pleasant memory from my memory bank, so this becomes a “slice o’ life” blog post that day. I respect and appreciate nature and my interaction with Mother Nature’s gifts is also a common theme. Sometimes the most-ordinary items become fodder for points to ponder over and touch upon. My career has been in the legal field and I have been a legal secretary for four decades, primarily working in downtown Detroit, and now working from my home. I graduated from Wayne State University with a degree in print journalism in 1978, though I’ve never worked in that field. I like to think this blog is the writer in me finally emerging!! Walking and writing have met and shaken hands and the creative juices are flowing once again in Walkin’, Writin’, Wit & Whimsy – hope you think so too. - Linda Schaub
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4 Responses to This old dawg is learning new tricks.

  1. Marge Aubin says:

    Oh my God I laughed all the way when reading your blog. I can just see you. You did fantastic by reading and going on line. I just take pictures and hope for the best. Great writing, Linda. Smile is still on my face.


    • lindasschaub says:

      Marge – I knew you’d get a kick out of it … I was happy to find I did not have to read all 113 pages that I had earlier whined about. I know you said you liked the wireless and I will try it but later. I had all my wireless specs handy, but was overly frustrated after 3 hours of fiddling around. Can’t get used to not peering through a viewfinder and I think the day you handed me your camera to take a pic of the freighter I said the same thing – I got some nice pics of the corner cabinet and the ducks tho. 🙂


  2. ann marie stevens says:

    I feel you were a classic Bratswurt Hot dog with that darn fangled little Zoomy camera! I would have sat down and cried!


    • lindasschaub says:

      Oh Ann Marie – I was ready to sit down and cry a few times. I am very exasperated by large manuals and when the directions are not straightforward – I wrote a blog post when I took the Buick in for a recall for the ignition key issue. I told you I needed to get a new battery in February this year, but also got a new one in May 2012 when car suddenly died. I had never adjusted the clock after they installed the new battery nd it was way off. I took a look at the manual and said “nope, I listen to WWJ in the car and they give the time constantly” … my old car I had a cheat sheet in the glove box but I’ve never done that with this one. I just passed 3,000 miles on Friday and the car will be 6 years old in September. When I took the car in for the recall I asked them to fix the cloch – so it was okay all Winter and now the new battery caused it to be off again. Before the next time change, I will read that manual.


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