When cell phone use goes too far…

Earlier this week, I was on campus at my alma mata and went to use the ladies room.  I walked in to hear a young lady using the toilet while still talking on the phone.  I could hear both ends of the conversation as the phone volume must have been set to high, which was far more than I needed to experience while peeing.  As I hurried to finish, I heard the young lady put the person on hold; presumably to wipe herself and then continue the conversation. 

As luck would have it, she and I came out of the stalls at the same time and she was still talking as she washed her hands and then make her exit; I just looked at her and shook my head.  C’mon girl!  From what I heard of the conversation, it could have certainly waited until she was done her business and then called her friend back.  And to make matters worse, the conversation wasn’t anything that one could consider an emergency, so why could she not have waited?  Where are we going as a society when we can’t disengage for a couple of minutes to handle natures business?  The more I see people on cell phones, the more annoyed I get. 

I’ve been forced to weave and dodge to get around a people on the street, in the store, or almost anywhere in public, they walk and text.  I’ve overheard way too many conversations because people insist in speaking really loud as if the person on the other end is deaf. 

My Love told me that while on travel, one of his co-workers walked into freshly laid cement because he was so busy texting and didn’t see the sign and subsequent cordoned off area of the fresh cement.  Needless to say, his shoes were ruined, he pissed off the masons, and was the laughing-stock of the group for the rest of the day.

I see groups of people out in public places where one would think the immediate social interaction would suffice, but no, they’re all on their phones.  It leads me to wonder why they even bothered to go out in the first place.  It seems like with all the engagement of social media, people are becoming more and more disengaged, which is pretty sad.  When I’m out with friends, I rarely ever pull my phone out and I make an issue if someone else does.  We’re supposed to be sharing time together; with each other, so there should be no need to include our respective phones. 

In addition to my annoyance, with the lack of limitations of where people are using their phones, I take offense when people text instead of calling.  I understand that sometimes texting is the best source of communicating with someone at certain times, but I refuse to have in-depth conversations with people via text.  Those conversations need to be voice-to-voice or face-to-face.  Text don’t talk and I’m not going to keep using emoti-speak to convey my emotions or have to wait to continue to conversation on account of overlapping messages.

There’s a time and place for everything, but it seems like real communication has become a lost art.  Penmanship has gone to hell because we type so much.  Vocabulary is not fully used or mastered because everyone abbreviations, which couple with bad spelling is a nightmare to read.  Many have real conversations that include emoti-speak, which drives me quite mad.  And worst of all, people have simply just lost the ability to speak and interact face-to-face.  We can’t have closeness; real closeness, if we’re so disconnected. 

This weekend, I challenge each of you to give up your cell phones for as long as possible and interact fully and wholly with other people.  Try to keep the use of your phones to the bare minimum and then let me know how it went.  I’ll do the same.

Truth be told, I play games on my phone more than I do anything else…hehe! 😉

Have a great weekend.

Live the life you love; love the life you live!

20 thoughts on “When cell phone use goes too far…

  1. I notice a 80% of folks are attached to an electronic device whether it be earphones are or in their hands. I am guilty of being on my phone looking at the internet on the bus and I wear my earphones to my MP3 almost all day. I will disengage from those items when I am with people who I am spending time with.

    The worst thing I have witnessed when a young girl got on the busy with toddler, bags, purse and her on the phone. She and the baby almost fell and she was more focused on not dropping the phone instead of catching her child. And she was talking all at the same time trying to pay the fare. SMH.

    ” It seems like with all the engagement of social media, people are becoming more and more disengaged, which is pretty sad.’ Your statement is correct I am guilty of using gadgets too much. I do respect others though. I try not to talk on the phone in public places. I hate to hear whole loud convos or folks running me over because they are absorbed in a text or convo.

    • 80% is a very high number of people Shai. Wow!!! 😕 When I worked in the city, I used to have my headphones in and then I realized it made me less aware of my surroundings and I didn’t like that, so I stopped doing it. I need to be aware of myself and the things around me at all times. There are occasions where I’m tuned it and there are times when I use put the headphones, but the music isn’t actually playing. It’s an odd disassociative technique I’ve developed to simply prevent people from engaging when all I want to do is just get what I’m doing done. Sad, but true.

      I’d have lost my ish had I witnessed what you did. That’s absolutely deplorable.

      I use my phone for entertainment purposes more than actually talking. I do still engage in voice contact, which I actually prefer. Texting is for those occasions when the conversation can lag or if it’s the easiest way to communicate at that time, but I try to limit it to those instance only.

      There is not reason why people feel like they HAVE to be on the phone any and everywhere. Ugh!

      • Yeah that is a high number. I know more than half the people I encounter whether walking the streets or on the bus with something electronic in their possession and being used.

      • We’re socially disengaged and distracted. I was in Philly a couple days ago and watched as a mother who was pushing a stroller, walk away not realizing her other child wasn’t next to her because she was on the phone texting. I stopped to get the boys attention and tell him his mother had walked on. He rushed to her side just as she noticed he wasn’t beside her. I so wanted to choke her out. *sigh*

  2. What a great post–certainly worthy of being Freshly Pressed!
    I heard a report on NPR this week talking about a family with a 5 year old traveled 2/3 across the country to visit with extended family to find EVERYONE plugged into an electronic device. The consultant being interviewed was asked to address how this should be handled.
    Its really a shame in my opinion.

    • Oh my! That’s pretty sad that an entire family completely disengaged. What’s wrong with having interactive conversation of creating games to entertain each other? I completely agree that it’s a shame that we’re only connected through a device! 😦

  3. When I’m visiting someone or spending time, my phone goes down. I barely talk on my phone. I play games and text. I would love to take this challenege, but with a new baby everyone is calling, but I would ace it once thing quiet down.

    I hate when I’m talking to someone and there eyes are on their phone.

    As far as chic that’s just nasty.

  4. Disgusting isn’t it?!? What could be so serious that people need to talk while they’re sitting on the shitter?!? I hear that every single day that I go into the men’s room in my office. Some dude is sitting in one of those back stalls sounding like he’s giving birth while carrying on an animated conversation. And you’re right, it’s never too serious, it’s about what he did this weekend or is planning to do. And yet he see’s absolutely nothing wrong with grunting and groaning and carrying on while he talks to someone on the phone.

    I’d rather not speak to anyone when I’m sitting on the throne. I’d rather concentrate on stocking the porcelain lake with the brown trout and no one really needs to hear me pushing booty babies out. Yeah, I’ll just go ahead and take the zero on that one.

    Ya know, the great thing about today’s technology is that you can communicate from almost anywhere in multiple ways. Whether it’s by social media, talking, texting, IMing, web camming, Facetiming or whatever, there are so many different ways to communicate; and today we’re paying a lot less to speak with our loved ones than we were 20 short years ago.

    Gone are the days of the $200-$300 long distance phone bill per month, that’s just unnecessary now. I pay that for the 4 smartphones on my cell plan and that’s carrying boatloads of data, voice and text usage.

    BluJewel my two children are sentiors in college, I’m willing to bet that 80% of the time that I’ve interacted with them since they’ve been in college is via text message. Yeah I’d prefer to talk to them too.

    I will try and take your challenge and communicate less on my phone during this weekend. I don’t think it will be difficult for me.

    • Reggie, if I ever realized someone had me on the phone while doing their business, I’d simpy hang up without extending the courtesy of letting them know since they certainly didn’t consider that same courtesy to me.

      I don’t mind the lack of a long distance bill especially when the cell costs that; however, I do mind not being able to hear a voice, understand an emotion, or feel the human interface.

      I truly understand the children interaction as Lil Lady is pretty much the same way, but I’ve told her that when the conversation requires levels of detail etc, that she’s to call or I’ll call.

      We’re doomed as a society if we’re all solely connected via devices!

  5. It would be nearly impossible for me to give up my cell phone, there is not use in acting like I could. I am the person who constantly texts people throughout the day. I try not to be rude, but text messages are VERY addicting, in the sense that I can text while never missing a beat doing whatever I’m doing.

    In addition to my annoyance, with the lack of limitations of where people are using their phones, I take offense when people text instead of calling.

    I get this ALL OF THE TIME. I call people, trying to be courteous, but “sitting on the phone” is a disadvantage to me. So I will usually say, “Text me.” Lol.

    • LMAO @ you Don, but at least you admit it.

      Texts has a time and; I concede to that; however, when 80% of more of the time conversations are held that way is a bit much.

      People want interaction, but discourage actually talking on a phone, which makes no sense to me. As I’ve said, I try to limit texting as a primary source of contact and I certainly utilize voice volume when talking on my phone and I absolutely use appropriate places to have said calls.

  6. I hate that phone thing. I hate texting. I don’t even answer mine if I don’t know the number. If you leave a message, I don’t listen to voice mail so…
    Yeah, I hate it.

    • Hahaha! I don’t answer mine either if I don’t know the number. I’m bad with voice mail as there are far too many steps to retrieve it. I think they need to work on that. I have no problem using the phone or even texting, but there is a protocol that should be employed with doing either.

  7. Regarding the challenge, I had one text conversation the entire weekend. I don’t think I had any voice conversations on it. In fact, I used it to play a game and even that was limited.

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