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When one of my daughter’s was very small, she asked me, “How do you know things, mom?”

That’s a huge question.

And it was hard to answer in the pre-Google days. Back when you needed to know, for instance, how to not get stepped on by a dinosaur. Back when the only way to learn something was from a book (or cave drawing – how many of those do you think are actually how-to guides?), or direct contact with another person.

But with the arrival of the internet and Google, it is a lot harder to impress a child. If they can learn to spell, they can go around you to look things up. Not that I’m complaining. Google has made me look good. Ask me a question, I whip out the phone and boom, I have an answer.

Google can add value in other ways. For instance, when you start typing in a question, and it finishes it with what it thinks you want to search for, and you see the weird stuff other people have been searching for?

Holy cow.

Or you learn there are people out there:

A: Who also don’t know the answer or how to do stuff

B. There are people who not only know how to do stuff, but will spend time recording and uploading a video on how to do stuff.

Recently I have learned how to change the battery in my door lock (and learned there IS a battery in there. Which made sense when I thought about it.) and how to fix my running toilet. I have also learned how to program my sprinkler system, though I didn’t use Google for that. My sister referred me to her sprinkler dude. But I’m sure Google would have been happy to help, too.

The new reality of life in this century is this: if you can figure out how to ask the question, there is probably someone out there who has uploaded, or posted an answer.

The real challenge becomes asking the right question.

What is the weirdest question you’ve asked Google? Was it answered? What else do you use Google for? How much do you actually know now that we have Google (hahaha, trick question!)?

I love comments so much that I pick a favorite to receive my monthly AnaBanana gift basket ($25 value).  (And don’t forget that once a quarter I’ll be tossing in something fun from the Perilously Fun Shop!) The recipient is announced in the first blog post of the new month.

Perilously yours,


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How To How-to
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2 thoughts on “How To How-to

  • May 31, 2017 at 7:24 am

    I have no idea how I ever got along without the internet and Google. I wrote several novels before the internet came into being, and I don’t know how I managed to do that. How did I research? I look up all kinds of quick facts all the time.

    I think I used to use encyclopedias a lot.

    • May 31, 2017 at 8:32 am

      I know! When I wrote Spy I had to write to get research material! Snail mail! And go to the library many times.

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