Adventures in Technology

The Good! You can learn to do virtually anything by watching videos on YouTube!

The Bad! You have to endure a YouTube video– or many– to learn it.

So I recently picked up a pristine used Honda Accord coupe for mere money. Lots of technology there, some of which I’m familiar with (touch screens, backup cameras, blind spot detection) and some I’m not (keyless entry and starting).

A friend advised me, based on his unfortunate personal experience, to buy a spare battery for the fob and keep it in the glovebox. His fob had died a premature death. He popped out the hidden key and got into his car, but what then? No place to stick the key. Couldn’t start the car. Hopefully it got him out of the rain, at least.

So what battery, and how do I replace it? YouTube!!! I bring up the first video. It’s three-and-a-half minutes long. Hmm. This must be a difficult job. But no! There’s half a minute of the guy alternately holding the fob in our face and showing us the “Keyless Remote Battery Low” warning on the dashboard. Back and forth and back and forth. Then another 30 seconds showing us the batteries he bought at Dollar Tree. Yup, it’s a CR2032. Got it. I see it. Move on.

The next 45 interminable seconds are spent trying to open the fob with one hand and muttering to himself, while simultaneously swinging the phone around wildly with his other hand until I got nauseous and had to throw up! But seriously. He eventually had to set the phone down to accomplish this two-second, two-handed trick. I mean, was there no time for a quick dress rehearsal? Or even a cold read? Is it against YouTube policy to do retakes? You know, just stop, delete the failed effort and start over? And why would anyone post this on YouTube in the first place for all the world to see, to cringe and laugh at?!?! Just do it the heck over!

There’s also a 27 second video. Yah, I should have gone there first. But it wasn’t nearly as entertaining. But there are also other videos on this same Honda Accord key fob battery replacement task that run beyond 3 minutes. Good grief. I’ve also endured videos on how to do computer stuff, “taught” by a guy who couldn’t type and spent a minute or more trying to figure out why what he was trying to show us how to do wasn’t working– and paying no attention to me yelling at him and tapping the blatant misspelling right there in front of his blind eyes.

Next up on YouTube: How to build a nuclear reactor in your basement! Do I go with the one-minute version and get it done, or pop some popcorn, grab a beer, and go for the Dumb and Dumber high wire circus act?


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