Thursday, January 11, 2007

People Will Talk

When I used to hear people talking to themselves, I thought maybe the person had some mental condition like schizophrenia. But these days you really have to be careful and look for the telltale signs of a wireless cell-talker. They are, you know, those people who wander around speaking to what appears to be to themselves. They have, at times, caught me thinking they were speaking to me, and I’d say, “Hello,” only to get a strange look. So, I’ve learned to look ear-ward for the gizmo, often so tiny it could be a rather large hearing aid.

How nice it used to be when we could actually get out of the office. Now, business folks bring it along wherever they go. I suppose they are happy to always be in touch. Not me. I’d rather be free from the electronic beck and call we call progress.


eric said...

I think people want to feel important. Most everyone has a cell phone, and no one wants to feel left out. It’s a poor statement on society.

This morning at Target, a woman was standing face to face with the check out girl, and talking with someone on her blue tooth. Frankly it’s rude to all parties involved.

I used to work for a company that had me on call 24/7/365. I got calls at all hours of the night and day, and sometimes at the most inappropriate times. Nothing was sacred. Since I quit a year and a half ago, I haven’t much used a cell phone, and things are much better.

Sheila said...

Thanks for stopping by Eric. I recall an old song by Stephen Stills "Love the One You're With." The lyrics go "And if you can't be with the one you love, love the one you're with."

Cell-phone conversations are intrusive, rude, revealing, mostly unnecessary and they can be dangerous. At the airport yesterday, I overheard a woman who was talking to the person next to her in line say, "I stopped taking the train to New York because of all the people on cell phones. At least they make them turn the phones off on the plane."

Marion said...

I agree totally...I haven't followed the masses and I have no cell phone. I tell others this, and you should see the looks of surprise!

Son Scott said yesterday a cell phone is a must have, as we were debating whether to renew Gray's or not. He cannot live without constantly being in touch...with his friends, his name it.

I figure I don't need more intrusion into my search for peace!

Sheila said...

Marion, you are right of course about this intrusion into quiet time. I resisted the cell-phone bandwagon for a long time. I'm not a big phone talker to begin with but on a few occasions the phone has been handy. If you are late or lost, it's nice to have one. If your car breaks down, again, a phone is useful. However, I think using the phone to ask what kind of toilet paper should be purchased or other such minor things is silly.

Sorry to tell you hotshots out there, but you are polluting my environment with your chatter. Could we have cell-free and TV-free zones at airports and other public places? What is up with the TVs too? Have you noticed how many restaurants are putting the darned things up now? You know if I wanted to watch TV, I'd have stayed home.

Dirty Butter said...

My hubby was in route sales for over 25 years, and until we bought a cell phone, I had no way of getting in touch with him all day. When his aunt died some years ago, I had to drive all over town looking for him.

We use the Tracfone kind that you buy the minutes cards for. We buy a 1 year card each year for 100 minutes. Right now, we have 550 minutes on our phone, because we hardly ever use it! It is strictly for emergencies. Our daughters and my Daddy are the only ones who have the number.

We've had the number speed dialed into my Daddy's phone, with a piece of Velcro stuck on that key, so he could call us if he needed to. But that rarely happened.

I agree with you totally that people have gone absolutely crazy with using these phones constantly! They need to get a life.

Sheila said...

Rosemary, you have the right approach. My son and I attended a financial aid for college meeting last night at his small school. We were in a room with fewer than 35 people when a parent's cell phone went off. Not only did she answer it, but she proceeded to carry on a conversation. The speaker wisely stopped and all heads in the room turned to her loud and obnoxious voice. When she finally noticed he had stopped talking, she huffily got up and left the room with her embarrassed daughter trailing behind her. I do believe this was the worst cell abuse I've seen.

Jay Croft said...

There's another downside to cell phones: drivers using them.

Many, many times I've nearly been sideswiped by drivers not paying attention while yakking. This has happened to me both while I've been in a car, and while on foot.

Studies have shown that there is little difference in holding a cell phone while driving, and using one that doesn't involve use of the hands. The basic problem is that THE DRIVER IS NOT PAYING ATTENTION.

Sheila said...

You are absolutely right about the not paying attention. My older son used to commute from Chicago to the western suburbs, and Chicago required cell users to have the hands free phone set up if they were going to talk while driving. I got to hear close calls and that's not reassuring to a mother. Younger son will call me on his way to school or home, and I think I need to tell him, don't call unless it's an emergency.

Whether you are talking on the cell or brushing your teeth as I once saw a woman doing, pay attention to the driving.

jillbeth said...

I am so backward--I still don't have a cell phone. Hubby has one because he was driving a 20-year-old car to work 50 miles away, and I wanted to know he got there OK! We have a newer car now but he still calls me when he arrives and at his break time. It's nice to hear from him during the day, since I work from home.

Sheila said...

Thanks for visiting and commenting jillbeth. It makes sense when people are on the road to have a cell phone and in case of a break down. Most of what we hear, however, is trivial time wasting.

Naomi said...

Cellphones are so intrusive. Even when people are told to switch them off, quite often they don't. I'm been at the cinema or theatre and heard phones beeping. It's so distracting. I was at a church service once when somebody's phone rang! They are also a danger as so many drivers here in England flout the rules and use them whilst driving. I put a post on my blog about this some time ago.

Sheila said...

Here's an idea. In theaters and churches and other places where they should be turned off, have no admitance unless you agree to pay a fine if yours rings.