OCTOBER 31, 2016
We agree about obnoxious cellphone use

The other week I commented about people’s obnoxious cellphone use and how a woman crashed into me at an airport because she was staring down at her device and not paying attention to where she was going. Once again, you chimed in and it sounds like many of you feel the same way.

“People are even riding their bikes and almost hitting people,” wrote Shelly. “I was walking down the sidewalk and the guy had one hand on the handlebar and the other on his phone but he was barely looking up as he drove.” Ultimately Shelly didn’t get injured but there’s no word on how the cyclist ended his journey.

“I’m with you,” said Rhonda. “Spend more time living life with what’s happening around you. Live in the moment and not behind some screen. Life is too short.”

But life is often captured with those devices and posted for the world to see. That’s actually kind of what annoys James about phones.

“I saw those MTS ads that tell you to enjoy your date and not worry about your data usage and there’s a picture of two people taking a selfie,” James wrote. “Are they actually enjoying each other’s company or are they double dating with their phones? I remember when a date was between two people and not their phones.”

It’s true. I made a similar comment in my book Put Down Your Damn Phone Already. I note that at a restaurant dinner for two is almost like dinner for four because each person will plop their phone onto the table as though it’s another guest.

Even my mom chimed in. She stopped in and picked up the paper while driving to North Dakota from Winnipeg.

“This is why we still have a flip-phone that doesn’t do Internet or texting!!!” she emailed from home when she got back. Then again, sometimes I wish they did text so it would alleviate those lengthy nagging phone calls. Kidding, Mom!

I have corrected many people when they texting and saying they are “talking” to so-and-so. No, actually, they are writing to so-and-so. Maybe if there was more talking it wouldn’t be so impersonal.

It might be a little too soon to start working on your new year’s resolutions but maybe reassess your phone usage and think about how it is affecting your loved ones. If you wrote more words on your phone today than you spent speaking to your partner, well, that might be saying something.

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