Tuesday, November 13, 2012

My Smart Phone is Making Me Stupid

When I was in college, I would leave my parents' house and drive 3 1/2 hours back to school with no communication. I would call from a LAND LINE when I arrived at my destination. My "mobile phone" was the size of a carry-on suitcase and was to be used for "emergencies only", as the going rate per-minute was somewhere between arm, leg and your first-born.

Technology improved.

Five years ago I had a silver Nokia flip phone. With it, I had the ability to make or receive calls, text (if I need the letter 's' I had to push the '7' key four times), and take pictures. They were slightly higher quality than an Atari video game screen, but they were pictures nonetheless. I still have it sitting in a drawer around here somewhere. I'm sure if I powered it up, it would be fully charged even though it hasn't seen an electrical outlet in half a decade. It never dropped calls. When it closed, the keypad was covered, so I never butt-dialed anyone. I'm convinced I could have dropped that sucker from the top of the Empire State Building and it would have remained in one piece. Oh, Nokia. You kicked cell phone ass. 

Technology improved some more.

I didn't WANT a phone that had more features, but the snickering and whispers I would hear (from my husband) about my beloved flip phone finally got to me so I caved. My first step up was a Blackberry. I held on to that for about 2 years. Or however long it took for me to be eligible for an upgrade because cell service providers are criminals.

One day I went to Best Buy to see if they could fix a small problem I was having with it.

"You know you're eligible for an upgrade, right?"

I was eligible for the iPhone. Cue the Heavenly choir. Even though I SWORE I would not succumb to its evils, the iPhone and its magical powers got the best of me. I couldn't resist the lure of having all of those apps and the internet and a touch screen right at my fingertips. I was intoxicated by technology and I bought it on the spot.

I think I spent the next 6 hours with my face buried in it. Texting, Facebook, email, the internet, Words with Friends, Pinterest, iTunes, calendars, alarm clocks, reminders, Netflix, GPS, up-to-date weather, Pandora, etc., etc., etc. They were all available to me with the simple swipe of a finger.

This phone is ruining my life. I'm sure of it. The act of mindlessly looking at it has evolved into a nervous tick. That is the only explanation for why it happens at such a high frequency. I catch myself doing it...like when you look at your watch 5 times in a row and still don't know what time it is. I don't even know what it is I'm looking at. Nothing interesting is happening on Facebook. I should know - I've looked at it 30 times in the last 10 minutes. I'm so frustrated with Pinterest that I only look at the "funnies", but everyone is just pinning the same things over and over and over. Stop telling me to 'Keep Calm' about everything for crying out loud. And I've been waiting 7 whole minutes for Smartypants123 to play me back in Words With Friends. My mind is turning to mush and I'm letting it happen.

I won't deny that smartphones are an amazing technology. Because they are amaaaaaazing. Like Sci-Fi amazing. But I hate that If I leave my house without my phone, I'm as good as headless. I should probably seek out some sort of support group. I'm sure they exist.

I'm anxious (and a little terrified) of what technological advancements the next 10 years will bring. So I think maybe I'll stay right where I'm at with cell phone technology. It can't get better than what we already have. Can it?


  1. I bet there's an app to help you find a support group!! :)

    1. I wonder if they make you turn your phone in before the meeting starts? Baby steps.

  2. Mom remembers when you got your iphone. She said you were never the same again . . .

    Your Pals without a cell phone,

    Murphy & Stanley

    1. Keep it that way!

      But if memory serves correctly, your Mom is pretty attached to her smartphone. I have a very clear memory of her saying "I gotta have my data".

  3. I like the voice to text feature. It's like having a sexy little secretary dictating all of my correspondence.

    1. See? I'm already behind. I still have the iPhone 4. My Facebook posting/texting frequency is borderline unacceptable as it is. I shudder to think what it would come to if I didn't even have to type it out!


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