First came the pod peopleJuly 27, 2010 at 2:18 am | Posted in I'm just saying, Miscellaneous, modern trends, social comment | 4 Comments
Tags: iPods, smart phones, technology, text messaging, texting
Let me preface my remarks by saying I am not a technophobe. In fact I’m quite the opposite. I do some Internet Technology consulting, among other things, to pay the bills and I am the person friends and acquaintances call when they have problems with their computers or other electronic devices.
That being said, I do not own an i pod or other mp3 player, a smart phone, or any sort of electronic gaming device. I generally keep my cell phones until they die and are so not cool that some people probably wonder what the hell that thing is. I have a minimal monthly plan and rarely come close to using all of my minutes. Few people I know even have my cell number and I use it only when necessary. I don’t keep it within reach unless there is good reason to do so.
It seems electronic gadgetry is evolving faster than antibiotic resistant bacteria and new electronic devices are being introduced into the market almost as often as Firefox releases upgrades.
A few years ago I referred to them as the pod people. The ones who couldn’t go anywhere without their i pods and at least one ear bud always in place while spending much time looking at the screen to get the right music mix. If you were lucky enough to gain their attention, they might grudgingly remove one of their ear buds and impatiently suffer through whatever verbal communication was being foisted upon them. Add into the mix those folks always talking on their cell phones; in their cars, walking and talking while paying little attention to their toddlers wandering the parking lots, working out at the gym, in stores, banks, bathroom stalls…you name it. What the hell, I wondered, was so important that these phones were practically permanently attached to their ears, and when not talking were always nearby should someone have a thought that must be instantly communicated. Was I out of the loop, missing the boat on important breaking news or were people just wowed by the ability to be in constant communication.
Cell phones have come a long way. You can use them to listen to music, check your email, surf the web, play games, pay bills, tweet, check or update your Facebook page, and most importantly NOT talk on them since they now make text messaging so very user-friendly. Now with email, instant messaging, text messaging, Facebook, and Twitter we NEVER have to speak with anyone, ever. If this keeps up we are likely to evolve without the capacity for speech, which is what separates us from other animals.
When I am out and about I see people with their phones, which are now called wireless devices, in their faces and they are utterly engrossed in either reading or texting what…I have no idea. Apparently I have no life since I have no need to engage in these activities. It occurs to me that, were I a criminal type, which I’m not, people so enamored with their wireless devices are completely distracted and would be easy pickings.
Most people I know keep their phones close by. If we are at dinner they are on the table. They have to be; someone might text them and the world might end if they didn’t respond instantly. I find it annoying and rude when trying to engage in conversation with someone and they have no compunction about interrupting whatever the topic, to instantly answer a text, or a call (more rare these days) as if national security depended upon it. It is as if they have become a slave to their wireless devices, the way they constantly check them, even though they are never out of reach, lest they may have missed an important message.
I’m sorry but I just cannot allow my life to be dictated by a tiny computer. I’m just saying…
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