The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, April 15, 2005


Cell phones

Do you have a cell phone? Most people do these days, and so do I, but I have to admit that I am "cell phone challenged." I think I just might have lots of company among those of us born before 1940.

I still remember the days when you went to the house that actually had a telephone installed, picked up the receiver, and told the operator what number you wanted.

Nowadays, we have these tiny little things that get lost in your pocketbook. The numbers are so small that not only do I have trouble seeing them, but also a person needs fingers the size of toothpicks to even punch in the numbers.

We first got a cell phone for emergencies; car broken down on the road, power outage and need to contact the fire or police, things like that. We have used the cell phone so rarely that we forget how to operate it. Which button to push, how to turn the thing on and off, is it on or off, how to "send," how to receive on those rare occasions when the phone is turned on and someone actually calls us on it, or even to recognize the fact that it is even ringing. Yes, we are challenged.

I am amazed that now these little phones can take pictures, send pictures, and go on line, all on a tiny little postage stamp size screen. Our homes absolutely have to have big screen TVs, big flat screen computers and DVD players, and yet people are overjoyed to use this tiny little screen and not complain.

The cell phone seems to be a permanent appendage to many people, and not just the kids. Why does one have to be in constant contact with everyone, every minute of every day and night? These things are going off everywhere, and we are forced to listen to one side of people's conservations, both friends and strangers alike. What ever happened to peace and quiet, good manners and privacy?

Around here, the service comes and goes. "I'll call you back, Mom, I'm coming into a dead zone." Sometimes you have to pay at both ends of the call. Sometimes you can call anyplace in the world for free. Also, now you can be tracked via GPS to your exact location. I can see two sides of that little "convenience" as well.

What's the cost of all this convenience? People are interrupted day and night, whether it is a "good" time to be called or not. People are so busy calling and getting instructions, that they have no time to think for themselves. And those silly little tunes that they play when ringing, please.

Yes, I'm challenged and I think I will stay that way.

2005 The Carlisle Mosquito