Sixteen: Concerning unexpected bookmarks

Originally Posted 14th February 2011

I just made myself cry by opening up Amazon. It is the unexpected reminders that hurt most because you are unprepared and they therefore get past your defences. By way of explanation I should tell you that this computer used to be my Mum’s, my Dad cleared it down mostly before giving it to me but one thing he failed to do was clear the bookmarks from the internet browser and, as it turns out, log out and clear the memory of the Amazon password therefore when opening Amazon I was greeted as her with all the relevant recommendations. Now I can’t bring myself to log out.

I neither took this photo nor painted the picture it is of. It was done in 2008 by my mum and I love it.

There are digital echoes all around us of people who are gone; there are comments on photos of mine made by my Mum years ago, there are bookmarks and amazon recommendations all out there in cyberspace like digital memories. I don’t know whether this is a good thing or not. We leave pieces of ourselves lying around in the ether for anyone to see, what happens when we are gone? do these remain as our legacy, will they inform future generations about how generation x (yes I am just generation x) dealt with the computer age? Do they provide reminders to future generations as valuable as diaries and letters from a past age or are they to easily removed leaving only unintended digital echoes?

I do not know the answers to these questions, I just know that amazon made me cry today and no doubt will again, but that sometimes the comments on Flickr make me smile.

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