Thursday, August 30, 2012

The New Antisocial World

This morning I woke up, rolled out of bed and made my way to grab a cup of coffee. Mad wakes up before I do, so while she is in the shower, I'll make her breakfast. We have a little routine. Afterwards, we sit, watch the news together and talk about whatever is happening or even look at stuff on the computer --together. This morning I found a little note left on the coffee maker just to let me know I was her 'everything'. Although she may have wanted a lumberjack type of breakfast, it was something my heart really needed today. We never run out of things to talk about - we're like two hens yappin' & yappin' about this-n-that. One morning, while vacationing in Provincetown, we went to the dining area of the bed & breakfast we were staying at. It was Women's Week, and needless to say the entire greenhouse-like dining room was filled with coupled up women. It was strange though, we were the only couple chitchatting and laughing. We looked around and wondered why everyone was so quiet. One couple had their breakfast in front of them, as they read the Wall Street Journal simultaneously. Most couples were on their laptops and smart phones having their breakfast as well. Not. one. peep. out of any of them. Our laughter and gossip about the night before must have disturbed the library-like atmosphere, but then one girl rose up from her table and said to her partner, "See? That's what I want! Why can't we talk like that?" She then looked at us and said, "You girls are great, I love the enthusiasm you two have. How long have you been together?"  When we said over 15 years, she dropped her jaw and thought we had just met recently. I'll never forget that morning.

Why aren't people talking anymore? Why aren't couples talking anymore? You can walk into a crowded restaurant and look at the party of five at the corner table and they'll all be texting, or at least half of them will be. Even with friendships - put the phone away. Okay, so you have an important job that requires you to have your phone most of the day. But when you're in a social setting, like dining out with family and friends, and you're texting 50% of the time, do you really think you're "good company"? Why are you "here" and not "there" where the person you're texting with is?  I don't understand why our phones hold more importance over the 'here & now'. It takes priority over the person you are spending time with. It's basically saying, "I'd much rather be with the person I'm texting with, than with you right now."  I understand taking photos and posting it up on whatever social networking you're using, but as far as constantly yappin' on your phone while you're with other people, it's annoying. Nobody wants to hear your conversation and nobody wants to be around you if you're going to be "absent" during a visit. That's basically what you're doing. You're not 'here' --- you're in a land of electronics communicating with people you'd rather be with -- plain and simple. When Madelene and I go out, (or anyone I'm with) the phone is in my pocket. If I need to, I'll snap a photo or two, send it to Twitter or Facebook --- or if someone is planning to meet us, a text or two will be sent to confirm. That's it. We've become antisocial in social settings due to social networking. I'd rather a nice little message on a post it rather than a text any given day. I miss getting a real handwritten letter rather than an email. But, that's the way of life now...sadly.

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