Today, the cell phone has become like another appendage dangling from our bodies. Whether its walking down the street, shopping or even sitting at work, it seems these tiny electronic devices have become as essential to our lives as breathing.
People always harass me that my cell phone is almost always off, but truthfully I’m not interested in being accessible every minute of every day. For centuries, society was able to successfully survive without a cell phone glued to their ear, so it is possible to live quite happily without one. But I realize I’m in the minority here.
What I think bothers me most about cell phone use is how often we’re included in other people’s conversations whether we want to be or not. Walking through the grocery store, huddled in a crowded elevator, sitting in the park or standing in line at a popular coffee house, people have no problem discussing very private matters among a group of total strangers, as loudly as possible, I might add.
Sorry, but I don’t really care to know about little Johnny’s report card, the new handbag you just purchased that you’ll have to forgo a few car payments to afford or anything having to do with Charlie “the freak show” Sheen.
But the strangest cell phone use of all came the other day when I was in the bathroom – yes the bathroom. Some guy is having a complete conversation on his phone the entire time he’s taking care of business, if you know what I mean. Now I’m not bashful or anything, but is that really the time and place to be on the phone with other people around?
At first I thought this was just an isolated incident, until I told the story to a few co-workers. Turns out a lot of people, both men and women, use their cell phones in the bathrooms at work. First of all, that’s just gross and secondly I doubt the happenings in our day lives are so vitally important that we need to have a complete conversation in the toilet.
French novelist Gustave Flaubert once wrote that, “Earth has its boundaries, but human stupidity is limitless.” When society still drives down highways texting and talking on their cell phones regardless of the law, when people spend more time on their phones than with each other, when people have complete conversations in the bathrooms at work, it only reinforces what Gustave said – human stupidity IS limitless.