Friday, July 11, 2008

Electronic excuses

I do not use a cell phone. In fact, I refuse to use a cell phone. People tell me that I should, that such-and-such deal exists, and it's really cheap*, which might be a valid argument if I actually wanted one. I do not. I do not want to be tied to yet another piece of electronic crap in my pocket. I don't need something else to worry about losing. I don't need the anxiety of hoping battery and/or minutes don't run out before I get a call I am expecting. I do not want to concern myself with turning the thing off whenever entering a classroom or theater.

And sometimes, just sometimes, it is nice to get away, you know?

Unfortunately, being a holdout on this technology is finally starting to make things difficult for me. It seems that when you can reach anyone at any time, there is no need to set concrete meeting times/places. Which means I have to fight to make people commit. Cellphones, or mobiles, or Handys, or what have you, have encouraged laziness and a non-committal attitude in my generation and I hate it. You don't need to have plans, you can just call and determine plans while you go. You don't need to be on time, you just let people know you're late, as you show up consistently late. You don't need to stick to plans at all, so long as you call and let those you are leaving alone that you decided to do something else.

I can't stand cellphone culture. I think the device is slowly making us stupider, and refuse to use one because I will not become yet another obnoxious person running around talking while trying to get things done, and constantly tied to an electronic device in my pocket. When people can't arrange meetings and keep their times without calling on the way with their phones, it is not a problem that I don't have a phone, it is a problem that they can't keep the arranged time.

Guess I'm just old fashioned. 2003, those were the days.

I have heard before from students who choose not to drink that they constantly get people asking them why, as if they must have something wrong with them to make them not want to. In fact, some just don't want to be part of a culture that they see (rightly so) as often irresponsible and rude. I am starting to feel the same way about my lack of adherence to the social norm when it comes to phones. It must be because I am cheap or confused that keeps me from getting a cell phone. I am both of those things, but first and foremost I just don't want one. Some people just don't grasp that.

So anyway, I'll sit here alone for now as I wait for my phone-dependent friend to show up. We'll see how long it takes him to get here......

*30 euro is only comparatively cheap - that is food for a week for me.

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