Webcams, Smebcams! Who needs ’em?

So I was reading a techie mag over at Barnes and Noble today while I waited for my coffee to cool down and the jist of the article I was reading said that more and more people are going to want to converse and/or conduct business online with their webcams on.  Ugh!  What’s the fun in that?  The article went on to say that sooner or later, our cellphones will offer the “convenience” of webcam conversing.  Oh, joy!  There goes the convenience of carrying on a conversation while I’m sitting on the toilet.

What was my mom thinking?

What was my mom thinking?

I personally find webcams rather daunting.  I lose my train of thought because I get distracted watching my mouth trying to catch up to my words.  And let’s not forget the fact that you don’t exactly look your best on these things.  I don’t know about you, but I always look like a talking driver’s license photo.  Not good.  Do we really want to be able to count nose hairs when we’re on the computer?  And what if you have folks in front of webcams who don’t realize they are being watched?

Brother John Up Close and Personal

Brother John Up Close and Personal

They can also be recipes for disaster when you get some people in front of them.  I remember the first time our whole family sat down in front of one to talk to our future daughter-in-law’s family.  It was Thanksgiving and my brother and his family were visiting us from Michigan.  We were all gathered around one little laptop trying to make a good impression when I happened to glance over at my brother.  He had taken one of the paper napkins and fashioned a beard out of it, ripped two holes in the sides for his ears and put it on his face.  I was mortified! 

“What the heck are you doing?” I hissed under my breath.    “Who, me?”  he answered, innocent as a cherub.

I gave him a good poke in the ribs, hoping my husband’s body would shield my actions.  “Ouch!  That hurt!”, he yelled.

“Take it off!” I ordered as quietly as possible and looked away from the camera long enough to glare at him threateningly.

Later, when the call was terminated, I pulled him aside and said, “What in the world were you doing?  They’re going to think our family is nuts!”     “I was just trying to have some fun,” he said.  “It was getting pretty boring.  You all were so serious.”     Gee, another family bonding moment caught on webcam.

Yes, with a webcam, you just can’t keep any mystery going.  I trained as a thespian in college.  I can use my voice to sound young and sexy, no-nonsense and professional, southern peachy, British, and several other variations in between.  But put me in the glare of a webcam and there isn’t much I can do to change the physical facts of who I am.  If I didn’t get a good night’s sleep or am having a bad hair day, there would be no hiding it.

The only time I think a webcam could come in handy is when you want to lay a little guilt trip on your grown kids.  Yup, dial ’em up and put that camera on and then let them try to resist THIS face!

You CALL your mother, you hear me?

You CALL your mother, you hear me?


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