Now that my wife and I have joined the race to catch up with the rest of society in the Telecommunications Age, I feel an overpowering need to make this declaration.
At least one of our new “smart phones” — and likely both of them — will never become devices to be used for what I call “conversational texting.”
I can speak only for myself and will let my wife speak for herself. But I declare right here and now that “texting” will occur on my phone only for specific and pertinent reasons.
Let me stipulate as well that I detest the term “text” when it is used in the verb form. I almost without fail add a derisive inflection in my voice when I even utter the word. Members of my family and some of my friends know what I mean. I’ve actually gotten a couple of my nieces to follow my lead — at least in my presence. They are good enough to add that tone of voice when they use the verb-form use of the term.
I also detest the sight of people walking through the mall, or across the street, or in the grocery store — anywhere, if you want to know the truth — with their heads pointed down at their hands that are holding some kind of telecommunications device. These folks generally are oblivious to their surroundings and most likely are engaging in some meaningless conversational “texting.”
My wife and I recently returned from a week’s vacation in Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fla. We noticed — more than once, I should add — something quite galling. It was the sight of young children cavorting while waiting in line for an exhibit while Mom and Dad were “busy” sending “text” messages to God knows who. The parents were paying little or no attention to the kids, which made us wonder: Why aren’t Mom and Dad enjoying the moment with their kids?
But I digress …
“Texting” has many functional purposes. I can send a message to my wife asking her what I should get at the grocery store. She’ll answer with instructions. She can send a message telling me if she’s been delayed up at an appointment. I’ll acknowledge that message. We can “text” our kids to give them an estimated time of arrival if we’re en route.
You get the idea, yes?
None of this mindless cyberspace chatter for this old-timer. If I need to chat with someone, I’ll call whoever I need to talk to — on my new cellphone.