The proliferation of cell phones is incredible. Stay with me readers and let’s get to the bottom of this. It is a puzzlement to me.
We must be the most connected society in the history of man. The world now has nearly as many cell phone subscriptions as inhabitants. According to the U.N. telecom agency, there are over 6 billion cell phone subscriptions. That’s roughly one phone for 86 of every 100 people. China has a billion. India has almost a billion. The U.S. has about 330 million of the units.
Those are staggering numbers for sure, but what I really want to know is what the dickens is everybody talking about?
Here are some of my favorite eavesdropping’s: “Oh, I don’t know, I thought I would just give you a call and see what’s going on.” “Hey, did you just call me?” “ I’m in an elevator, I’ll have to call you back.” Blah. Blah. Blah. Drivel.
We’ve all had the experience of being in a public place and having someone screaming on their cell phone while they’re in your space. At my favorite watering hole downtown, one “gentleman” chooses to conduct his business at the bar in a loud voice, subjecting all of the patrons to his plans for the next day. Get out!
I was at Starbucks in Maumelle last Saturday and some lady decided she would check up on her granddaughter at a volume level where we could all hear the inane conversation she was having with probably a 5-year old. Then she had to repeat the conversation to her companion who was sitting only 2 feet away. Go outside! Wait till you get home! Don’t include me in your call!
Or how about when you’re in the grocery store and you turn the corner and think that the approaching unknown individual is talking to you, only to find that they are having some sort of idiotic conversation in your shopping space. Wait till you get home! Go in the parking lot!
Then there are the car calls. I challenge you to look around you at a stoplight or even going down Maumelle Boulevard. Almost everyone is on his or her phone. Who are you talking to? Could it wait till you got to a safer place to talk so we don’t have to watch you drive obliviously down the street talking about where you’re going to lunch or what you watched on TV last night?
And don’t even get me started about texting. That’s just pure stupidity. Or as I heard this weekend, ”that’s stoo-pid with two o’s.”
Don’t get me wrong, I have one of the little things and I spend over a $100 a month to have it. I need it to do business, as do many folks. I hardly ever use my “land line.”
Let’s turn back time to just 20 years ago. That was when the big “bag phones” were used and seeing one was not a common occurrence. So when did all these folks talk? How did they ever get through the day without calling someone while they were driving or in the grocery store or restaurant and uttering that brilliant rhetorical question of the ages, “What are you doing?”
See you on the Boulevard. (Hopefully paying attention to your driving!)
Neal Moore owns a creative consulting firm, Neal Moore Creative. He has lived in Maumelle over 10 years. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Facebook or on Twitter, @kneelmore.