Saturday, November 22, 2008

GET OFF THE PHONE!!!!

I have no problem acknowledging the convenience attributes of today’s mobile phones. I use one myself. What I cannot and will not acknowledge, however, is the incessant over use and abuse of this little piece of technology. Such a culture has demonstrated great rudeness to me; and another example of an ever increasing erosion of personal human contact.

Why do I arrive at such a broad opinion? Well, let’s see, life experience has to count for something! I will share mine….

How many times have you been in a meeting, at work, in a classroom , or just standing in line somewhere and suddenly you are forced to listen to a rather loud and obnoxious rung tone?---After which, the dramatic conversation begins!

Did I really need to hear that ring tone or the conversation? Did the speaker at the meeting need to be interrupted by the ring tone?

Additionally, do we really need to be dragged against our will into the someone else’s dramatic conversation?

If people are going to do engage in personal conversation in front of everyone else, the least bit of manners they can exercise is to excuse themselves away from the rest of us in a corner somewhere. Prior to the call, though, the ring tone going off is the epitome of RUDE! Hey you! Ever hear of silent mode? Chirp or vibration perhaps my friend?

Cell phones going off all the time and people engaging in personal conversation is one thing about lack of etiquette in using a mobile phone but I am no where near finished…

How about the scenario that has 3 or 4 people (teenagers play a part in this rude breach of the mobile phone code of etiquette) talking on their phone while ignoring the company they’re presently with? Is the company in person/people with the phone user not stimulating enough? In the case of teens using mobile phones at school, I cannot justify the need for carrying such a device. If they need to be contacted, then the parents can call the school--and the student can be paged to take a phone call at the office. How many times have I heard stories from teachers who hear these devices going off in the classrooms during tests, despite school rules prohibiting them! Rude….Rude--And unnecessary!

I know there are a lot of parents who have actually been conditioned to think they need the phone---and have lost all concept that such a device is really used out of convenience, not a need. A convenience for most people, unless you are on call or in a situation, or have an occupation that requires you to be contacted immediately somehow.

School kids, and soccer Mom’s I am not sold on the paranoia that they’ll enter dire straits without their phone! Not a necessity to have a mobile phone, but instead, a conditioning of the mind to mistake it as a need, rather than the convenience it is. Funny how not very long ago, my friends and I never needed to rely on such technology, and we played plenty of sports and had near perfect attendance at school.

Uhhh yes, those were the good old days back in ancient the 80’s and 90’s when we toughed it out, indeed. How sad to think these kids are so brainwashed to think that a mobile phone is something which they cannot do without! Unfortunately, the children of some of the parents who are mobile phone junkies are also now conditioned to think they ‘need’ a mobile phone.

Well, I guess this is the result when we allow ourselves to become so co-dependent on technology to do everything from spell, wash windows, clean the yard, blow our noses or wipe our butts! Sure, parents always want better for their kids, but the question we need to ask these days, is ‘more’ better? Or is creating an ever increasing co-dependence on gadgets something that is conducive to nurturing critically thinking self relying population? Is spoiling or making everything easier necessarily a good thing. These questions would be posed by those who are thinking---but has the phone become another culprit to the dummying down of a population who will NOT think?

Still more rude and inconsiderate uses of the mobile phone have now taken to the road. How many times do we witness what has become the standard American pose: The proverbial soccer Mom, driving alone in her gas guzzling tank, totally oblivious to the traffic around her--one hand on the wheel; one hand to the head holding the phone. (rude AND dangerous to other drivers and what has become the standard American pose!) Isn’t anyone doing what they’re supposed to be doing anymore without involving the phone? I wonder, what aren’t we doing these days while driving? Everything BUT driving! The mobile phone… and driving, don’t mix. If you must, why not take advantage of the hands free options.

Finally, I have to laugh at the guy walking down the street talking to himself (How it looks before I knew about the blue tooth) while walking his dog. Isn‘t the old dog good enough to give all his attention to? Please, stop the above nonsense…..turn off the phone, put it down, leave it at home for a change. If you’re not available, someone will leave a message. The convenience of having the phone in hand all the time simply results in a lot of unnecessary use and abuse of this product. It was not intended to be glued to your hand or head. Through such abuse of the mobile phone, we have seemed to forget what it me and to enjoy or respect all which surrounds us in a particular moment---because whoever is on the other end of our phone, has obviously become more interesting or a priority. If you have witnessed any other form of rude, excessive use, or abuse of the mobile phone, please share your comments!



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