There was a time when you wanted to visit a friend and meet up. You had no cell phone, so you made sure you were there. If you were having a conversation with someone, you would look each other in the eyes and talk. A conversation was between 2 or more people. Cell phones are great, but it seems like they are more and more taking over our lives. We depend on them for everything. Our so called smart phones are making us dumb. For myself, I use to be able to remember telephone numbers and figure out things for myself. Now, if I needed to remember my daughters telephone numbers I would be lost and stressed out. I barely know my husbands number by heart. And that is a shame. Technology is taking over our brains.
There are many advantages with having cell phones and I love mine. Some of those are emergencies, business and whatever else. But I have found that I rely on it way too much. I realized this when I went to visit my parents in Arizona. They live in a black hole when it comes to cell and internet service. I was in denial that there could be a place that I couldn’t find out what was going on in the world and with each other. But what I found is that it was great not being attached to my phone. I didn’t worry about doing the things I normally never get a chance to do and just visit with family. My friend did have a cell that could be used in this black hole and I would check in each day. But it was rather nice to not have to worry about the phone ringing off the hook, missing a status update or a text message. They all knew they couldn’t reach me where I was, and surprisingly they survived and so did I. As soon as I entered an area where I could get some bars, my phone with off the hook and the real world was there again.
Not too long ago, there was a picture that has made it’s rounds on Facebook about texting in public and when you are with others. This is a pet peeve of mine big time. I don’t like having dinner with someone and every few seconds they check their status, message or whatever else it may be. I might as well have eaten by myself or not go out at all. I find it sad that when a cell phone rings, everyone is taking their phones out of pockets and purses on cue. And it is sad and frustrating that you have to text the person in front of you to get them to talk or acknowledge you are there.
When I worked at a local grocery store, we had customers come up to the register all the time with phone in hand while trying to unload their cart. I would ask them if there was anything else they needed. Or how many items were in a bag. I felt like I was talking to myself. Oh, and when they put their finger up as if they were saying “hold on, I’m talking”, I would be ticked. This one lady did that. She was arguing with her husband for sometime. We could all hear her throughout the store. And lucky me, I got to check her out. She kept arguing. I was pretty tired of it by then. I rang up her groceries and when I gave her the amount, she lifted her finger. OH, NO! She did not just do that was on my mind. So I suspended her order and took the receipt to the customer service booth. I told her when she is done fighting on the phone for us all to hear, she can get her groceries. She gave me a look that could kill. But, I’m pretty sure the 5 or 6 customers behind me were applauding.
I try to be observant of those around me. If someone calls me while driving, they can wait for me to call them back when I stop. I very much dislike it when I go out with friends or family and the phone comes out and I’m trying to carry on a conversation. My husband would do that while we were out. Since the posting on Facebook, I have noticed the past couple of times, he has left his phone in his pocket. There was a time people did live through the whole thing of phones attached to the ears.
Then you have family dinners. I find it disheartening that when families are out together, they are all on cell phones. Why go if you are chatting to others or preoccupied by the phone. Makes no sense to me. I have had some people get mad that I don’t answer my phone right away. And I don’t really care if they get mad. When I’m out in public or with someone, I don’t need to be married to my phone. I want to visit with them. And unless someone is hurt or the world is coming to an end, then I won’t answer. There was a time or two I had to take my phone out of my purse that is normally turned off or on silent. I took it out and turned it on to text the person I’m having dinner with. I would ask them if they realize they are out to dinner and the phone can be shut off. I wish there was cell phone free zones.
I think it is entirely rude to be in line and you aren’t ready. They are there to take your order, not listen to your conversation. They do have other people they need to wait on. And then you get those at the drive thru, theaters, church and driving. This is a hot topic for me. I won’t even go into the whole driving while texting and chatting. If people don’t know the dangers with that, then they have had their heads in the sand or on the phone for way too long.