Smart Lady, Dumb Phone …

I admit it: I don’t have a smart phone.

I do have a cell phone (well, I guess it counts as that. It’s shared among 4 family members, and is pretty much for emergency use only, although even that is doubtful: probably half the time when I’ve tried to use it, I get the message “no service.” And I recall it ringing exactly once — while I was playing for a student’s solo at ISSMA contest. Sigh.).

I would have to call my phone more of a “dumb phone.” It doesn’t have apps. It can’t text. Well, maybe it can. But I have sent perhaps 3 texts in my life, and it amazes me that people can communicate in this way. Heck, I can play a mean Beethoven Sonata on the piano, and yet my fingers are apparently too clumsy to type texts on this phone.

I do realize that I am fairly alone in my non-smartphone-ness.

Because, whenever I’m out in public and look around, and it seems that everyone is looking down at a device in their hands.

This is a phenomena of the past five years, and I find it fascinating. My non-ownership of one of these bits of technology has transformed me into the fly on the wall I’d often longed to be.

I wonder: what is so interesting on these little screens?

I can’t claim total innocence here, because at home I do spend a large amount of time on my desktop computer. I do sometimes think I should step away from the computer to interact with other family members. But guess what? They’re usually involved on their own technology.

When I’m away from home — I am pretty much unplugged. But many others aren’t. Whether I’m driving, in the grocery store, at a concert, even at church — people everywhere are engaged with their phones. I recently visited a college class with my daughter, and so many of the kids were on their phones during the lecture. I had to cringe while considering how difficult it must be to hold peoples’ attention while competing with the entire internet and all the incoming texts.

And this video made me think about the topic even more. What might we be missing in our real lives because we can’t look away from the little screen? Or maybe the little screen has become real life?

What do you think? Are you tied to your smartphone? Any other dinosaurs out there like me?

3 thoughts on “Smart Lady, Dumb Phone …

  1. It’s like having your laptop in your purse. I’m a total convert and I held out until Christmas of ’13. I wouldn’t be without it now. I have the LARGE LG G2 and the screen is amazing. I read on it more than on my kindle. It was worth the ridiculous two year contract.My brother credits having a decent phone with growing his business–he can do so much on it that its like never being away from his office. Plus the games are fun! 🙂

  2. When you see me looking down it is either to avoid stepping on steps in the sidewalk, looking for money as I walk, or checking my Marlboro watch for the time.

  3. I’m irritated by people who grew up without phones but are now so tied to them that they feel lost if they leave their phone on the desk when they walk down the hall to another office. People can get along very well without them. I do, every day. Oh, yes, I have a cell phone that makes calls, so that if I’m in an emergency situation, I can call for help. But to be so tied to them that you can’t interact with those around you is saddening. Within the past year, I went out to eat with three people. Two were my age range, and they never pulled their phones out of their purses/pockets. The other was a generation younger than we. She didn’t put the phone down, except to eat, and then had it right next to her. While we visited, she interacted with her phone. What will society be like in another generation?

Thanks for taking the time to comment. I enjoy hearing your thoughts.