The kids are upstairs sending e-mail messages to one another. Alex pointed out “Of course we could just walk into the other room and say it, but there’s something fun about doing it in e-mail.”

I remember my first exposure to e-mail, back in 1990. I heard someone mention there was a way to communicate with people anywhere in the world instantly and for free. Imagine! I could write to a pen pal in Germany (hey, I’d just finished three years of German in high school) without licking a stamp. It was a pretty new medium back then– few people actually had e-mail addresses, and you had to fill out a ton of paperwork at the university to get one– but it sure seemed cool.

Now it’s a key part of modern communication, and something most of us take very much for granted. So it’s fun (and a little funny) to watch the kids suddenly realize what it can do.