I was in Palm Springs last weekend for some fun and relaxation. I walked into a coffee shop and noticed that every single person there was looking at a phone or a tablet. Not one person looked up or even noticed I was there. There was no conversation going on – it was people being one with their electronics.
As much as these said electronics have made the world smaller by allowing me to call my son in England by simply touching a few numbers, I have to wonder if these said electronics have not also separated us from one another.
We wait in a line for coffee or groceries or food and we don’t speak to the person in front or behind us because we have to check our Facebook or email or Instagram or Twitter on our phone because someone may have said something about us or we need to post a picture of our coffee or muffin or perhaps our scone. Are we seriously that self-absorbed? I believe the answer to that question is: Yes, Yes we are that self-absorbed.
I’m not passing judgment on anyone, for if I were honest: “My name is Barb – and I’m a phoneaholic.” I have email and Facebook, Twitter and Instagram all installed on my phone – and yes – I do post to all of them. I also have the Nook and Kindle App and more books downloaded that you can imagine. I have Angry Birds, Candy Crush, Bejeweled Blitz, Pet Rescue Saga and Juice Cubes. I have my Starbucks app, Netflix and my bank – I even have a flashlight! There’s so much more, but I think you get my point.
Do I need all of this? No, of course I do not. But apparently I am so self-absorbed that I do believe I need all of this. I believe that people want to see my coffee cup and scone, and I believe I’m so important that people will “follow” everything I have to say… Seriously?
Perhaps I need to get over myself.
I don’t think of myself as a vain person – However – to believe that people need to see and know what I’m eating and where I am and what I’m doing every moment of the day? Well – that’s pretty vain now, isn’t it?
I love the part of Facebook that keeps me connected with friends – and also allows me to make new friends. I love looking at pictures of friends and their families and I love the travel photos my friends post of places I’ve never been. I love this part of Facebook – it makes me feel that my friends are close when they really are scattered all over the world.
The thing is – I don’t need to check my Facebook page every five minutes… The messages, the pictures, the posts will be there even if I only sign on once a day.
And Twitter? I never understood Twitter – I still don’t. I’ve tried, I just don’t get it – so I believe my account can just go away…
Instagram? Well – I’m a photographer, so it will stay. I won’t post as much – but I do like looking at other people’s photos.
I’m breaking up with my phone – well – with some of the apps on my phone. I’m going to go into a quiet room and uninstall a few of them and grieve in quiet solitude.
I don’t want to be one of those people with their face in their phone and miss my life as it goes by. The faces of my friends and family and friends I’ve yet to meet are there waiting for me to see – and not through the eye of that camera on my phone!