It’s obvious that cell phones have changed the way that the world operates quite a bit. In business and personal lives, people are more reachable and more productive in places and times that they would not have been before.
But coming into the new, usually means changing or losing the old. The other day I was thinking of a list of things that have been altered or lost since cell phones became the norm. Things that might not be real obvious. (I won’t be including the “ability to drive well” as being lost…although it is true and accurate. I just want to be more specific.)
In no particular order:
1) We’ve lost the ability/purpose of remembering phone numbers. With a built in phonebook, less and less people remember any phone numbers at all. This becomes brutally obvious to us when we lose our cell phone and need to call someone.
2) We’ve lost the two most popular excuses for getting off a phone when we don’t want to talk to someone. “I can’t talk because I’m on the other line long distance.” and “I can’t talk because I’m just heading out the door.”
3) There is no real purpose to call and say goodbye before a trip. I have a friend who recently got a call from a lady out of state that said she “was just calling to say goodbye before she heads out to the East Coast.” What, they don’t have cell service in Maine? Do the lobsters confiscate your phone when you get off the plane? What’s the difference between calling from two states away and calling from 10 states away? Don’t get me wrong, it’s good to hear from friends before and during their trips. But just call to say hi from wherever you are.
4) No more pebbles to windows. Every young man is glad that they no longer have to sneak up to a house and throw pebbles to a girl’s window…hoping not to be heard by their father. Just call her cell from the car.
5) Overall, we’ve been stumbling on the ability to meet people in public places. Sitting at the DMV. Or riding on the bus. Or sitting in a fast food place. Or attending a convention. These used to be places you could meet new people and friends. Now it’s much more common that people will immediately turn to their cell phones instead of meeting those around them. In my opinion, we miss out on alot.
6) Short phone calls are less common. I actually like this one. you no longer have to call just to tell someone you’ll be there in five minutes. You don’t have to call to tell them the score of the game. Text messaging is so much easier. This morning I wanted to warn my family not to take the freeway because of a bad accident. I wrote one text message and sent it out to all of them.
7) For the most part, long distance charges is no longer a concern. (If it is a concern, then you’re getting a bad phone plan.) I was listening to a rap song from the mid 90’s and he said “I call you up long distance on the phone. But that ain’t nothing, it’s worth every bone” Besides being bad grammar and poor talent, the compliment would hold little weight today.
Those are the ones that I can think of right now. I’ll add more if I can think of them. Feel free to add more in the comments if I missed any.