Monday, November 25, 2013

Cellphones don't suck, people do!

So yeah..pretty harsh I know. But, still true, in my opinion. My husband and I are 2 of the 9% of adults in this country that don't own a cell phone. Yes, you read that correctly. We do not own a cell phone, we do not text every moment of our lives, we do not talk loudly about our private business while trying to push a shopping cart at the same time (and failing miserably) or put lives in danger by trying to operate our cars and text at the same time. We don't have an app for anything and we don't upload our lives instead of living them.

I know I sound bitter about the use of cell phones and to be honest, I am. Don't get me wrong, I appreciate the purpose that cell phones were SUPPOSED to serve. They make communication in general so much easier and come in very handy in case of emergency. I actually owned a cell phone for years. I talked, I texted, the whole nine yards. At first it was great and convenient, but then I started to notice a big change in our society. Inevitably, like most things that serve a purpose in this world, cell phones got overused, abused and relied upon way to heavily. Much like the internet before cell phones, video games before internet, and home phones before video games, etc etc etc. However, cell phones have reached a whole new level of over-use unlike anything I have ever seen in my 35 years of life. Their existence has virtually redefined the social structure of our world and NOT for the good.

Everywhere you look, people are attached to a device as if it's some kind of social life support. People are texting, talking and trolling more than half their day. This would all be fine if it didn't weaken, if not destroy, the human ability to interact with each other in real time. This makes me absolutely sick. Being a person who is sans cell phone, I can see it so much clearer than someone with one. It's like being the only sober person at a party. It's annoying as hell!! No one makes eye contact because they are so used to looking at a screen. No one has patience because they are now used to everything being at their fingertips online. People are growing increasingly more agitated at the simplest things. They are distracted constantly and for the poor people out there (my husband and I included) who are just trying to navigate through life, eyes wide open and paying attention, it becomes a nightmare to be in public anymore! I have to prepare myself every single time I go in public because I know I will be bumped into, shoved out of the way, spoken to rudely or very dismissively and rushed because someone behind me is impatient and can't wait their turn. It's exhausting for an introvert like me who enjoys personal space and polite social interaction. It's all I can do to stop myself from exploding on people who I don't even know simply because I desire some common courtesy.

I feel like I am becoming an old curmudgeon, but the truth is, I am reacting to what's being thrown at me on a daily basis. It sucks to live in a cold, checked out world in real time when everyone is supposedly "plugged in" more...but in what real sense? I ask cell phone owners who are you plugged into?? When's the last time you stopped, put the cell phone away and had a REAL conversation with someone? When's the last time you struck up a conversation with a stranger and made a new friend that way? If you can't go a whole day without picking up your cell phone (unless it's to answer an important call) then you have a serious problem! It's like a brand new addiction and everyone is pretty much fine with being an addict. Our world is just so sad now. I prefer to try my best to be plugged in to real time and that's not easy for me because I am a pisces...born to have my head in the clouds. I just miss the days when strangers would be nicer to each other, neighbors would help one another and people enjoyed face time.

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