Saturday, September 17, 2022

Born in Different Generations

Max sighed, he was absolutely bored. He checked his watch, 8:24 AM. He stood outside his sister's apartment, waiting for her to come out so that they could make it to their 9:00 AM meeting. He hadn’t seen his sister in a year, but she decided now was the time to work for the same company he was, without her own car. Apparently she totaled her last car and was waiting for the insurance claim to help pay for a new one. She asked him for a loan to get a new car, but after not paying him back in the past, he declined.

For Max, life was just fine until he turned 15, when his spoiled little sister was born. Born in an age of change, she was always trying to have the newest and shiniest things. He felt they were always opposites. Of course Max loved her, as was obligated between siblings, but it was a struggle to even see a resemblance between them. She loved the latest complex gadget, but he liked the simplicity in life. As she’s liking an instagram photo of a sunset, he’d much rather be there in the moment. She’d just complain about the temperature or the bugs. He always wanted to put 110% in his work, she only seemed to want to put in just enough to pass. But worst of all, his sister was notorious for being late, and it took a toll on her last few jobs. She was just lucky that his boss liked Max, and hired her for that reason. He was not going to let her be late today, even though she was supposed to be ready and out the door at 8:20. He walked up the steps to the second floor and knocked on her door, labeled “2B”. No response. He pounded on it again, this time much harder. The cheap siding shook violently. Once again, no response. Max pulled out his phone, flipped it open and dialed her number. He put it to his ear, waiting for the ringing to stop and for his sister to answer. After a few moments, she did.

“Ugh why are you calling me? I’m getting ready now.”

“It’s going to take thirty minutes at the least to get there, we should have left by now.”

“Okay but like, can’t you just text me that you’re here and waiting?”

“I don’t need to. Now hurry up.”

He snapped his phone shut. Moments later, his sister opened the door and groaned. It had been a year, and she had changed quite a bit. Her makeup was so caked onto her face she was orange, and Max thought it pointless if it only changed her skin color to that of a tangerine. She had a wireless bud sticking out of her ear, and nails so long she looked ready to claw someone. 

“You should have just waited in the car for me, Max.”

“You wouldn’t have known I was here.”

“Duh. That’s why you text me ‘here’. Easy.” Max ignored her snarky tone and motioned to the stairs. As soon as they were in his car, she was transfixed onto her smartphone, tapping almost violently on the screen. Her nails clanked against the glass. He was going to put the car in gear but froze.

“Put your seatbelt on.” He grumbled.

“Why?” She asked, her eyes and fingertips still glued to the phone. “Yesterday my friend Sarah posted a story that talked about how seat belts are actually useless. They’re just a myth.”

“Put your seatbelt on.” Max repeated, ignoring her.

“Fine.” She reached around and pulled the belt over her lap and chest. Click. “Happy now?”

Max ignored her again and drove off. He pulled his phone out of his pocket and tossed it to his sister, but it landed in her lap.

“Call my boss, tell him we might be late.”

“Ew, is this a flip phone? Why do you even have this?”

“It’s a phone, it makes calls.”

“But it takes you forever to send a text on these things. You gotta get an iPhone or something.”

“Don’t need it, this works just fine. Why would I need to send lengthy texts when I can just call?”

“How do you even access social media? The internet in general?”

“My computer. Don’t really need social media.”

“But like, what about checking in with friends? Or how do you check things on the go?”

“I can just meet up with them and no one needs to be on the internet when on the go.”

“What if you don’t know where to find a restaurant and need to follow a map.”

Max tapped at the screen attached to the car. “GPS” He said. “But rarely do I need it. All you gotta do is tell me where it is and I know how to get there. I don’t travel far.”

“How could you possibly know where every road and store and restaurant is?”

“It’s not hard to just remember what roads are where and what places are on what roads.”

“Oh my god that is way too much extra effort. How do you even listen to music?”

“It’s really not that much effort. My car has a radio and I can download mp3 files onto my phone if I really wanted to.”

“No, you need to get rid of this. You can’t do anything on it. I’m gonna call our boss on my phone. You can take this back.”

She threw the phone back at him, but he caught it in the one hand that was on his lap and set it in the cup holder. He sighed once more, it was going to be a long day.

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