Skip to main content

Bad Signs

Have you seen this new picture-taking device that has gained popularity? I first started seeing them at the theme parks and specifically with the Asian tourists because they are always so far ahead of the rest of the world with technology. For those of us who are absolutely incapable of taking a selfie, because we seem to have unnaturally short arms, the device makes a hell of a lot of sense. As I started seeing more of these however, with four foot telescoping capability and built in levels, it occurred to me that the existence of these devices might be a very bad sign indeed.

If you think about it, this device completely eliminates the need to have to ask anyone to take a picture of you. This could be because you don’t speak the native language and you are embarrassed, but I doubt that is the appeal in most cases. I believe that there are two reasons this device is so attractive to people. One: because they do not want to have to interact with any strangers out in public whatsoever. Two: because they do not trust strangers not to steal their camera from them. And then I know that you can throw a few control freaks in there who are unwilling to relinquish their cameras to amateurs, because they believe that they are the next Annie Leibovitz, because of course, she gets her most famous shots at the damn theme parks all of the time.

It is a symptom of a huge problem that we are struggling with in our society. We are choosing to isolate ourselves from each other more and more. We can drive through the ATM without interacting with a single person. If we are really diligent we can go to the grocery without speaking a single word to another human being. We can eliminate thousands of human interactions by using our computers. When we allow other individuals to isolate themselves this way, we have no idea where their mental health is at, and we could be cultivating a shitload of serial killers in our country right now, but we wouldn’t have a fucking clue because they never have to talk to anybody.

Not only is engaging in normal healthy human interaction good for our community, it is good for us ourselves. It is a fantastic way to share support and positivity with people that we have never even met before. I make a point of starting conversations with strangers as often as I can. It is good for the mind and for the spirit. It is even great for the brain to involve ourselves in communication with people who do not speak a common language, and I am always amazed how much information we can exchange without using words.

Just like so many things in life, technology has an equal capacity to do good and to do evil. Try to remember this when you make choices in using technology and especially when these choices are setting an example for your kids. I know that one of the best things that I can do for my children is to show them as many healthy and positive interactions between myself and the members of our community as I possibly can. No, I do not plan on ever purchasing one of these self-picture-taking thingies, and yes, I plan to ask strangers to take our family pictures more often.


Popular posts from this blog

20 Things…you learn after moving to Florida.

20 Things…you learn after moving to Florida.
1.There is a big difference between a roach and a palmetto bug. Real roaches are the guys from New York. They infest, they are spooky smart, they are dirty and nasty, and you have to work really hard to get rid of them. Palmetto bugs however, are big and creepy and dumb. You usually see them outside at night and they will fly right at your face. They don’t infest because they are native and they can’t survive in our AC temps. 2.Every public indoor place will always be frigid. Most of your friend’s houses will be as well. I take a sweater with me almost everywhere that I go, and if I forget to I regret it. 3.Outside of weather emergencies, weathermen are superfluous. In the rainy season, which is most of the time, there is an eighty percent chance of rain, every single day. The weather man has no idea what time it will rain, how hard, or for how long, and there is no way for him to predict it. You just have to go out there with your fingers cr…

Phineas and Ferb...the positive cartoon.

Phineas and Ferb
I wrote a story previously that went into my dislike of Sponge Bob; so to be fair I will go into my love of the cartoon Phineas and Ferb. I had been adverse to it before I watched it, because I believed that it was probably like everything else that is geared towards kids of the same age group. It is not. The cartoon is completely unique, and as all great cartoons, it is equally enjoyable for children and adults.
The first thing that caught my attention was the unbridled creativity, and innocent intelligence that the two main characters possess. The boys can do anything; the sky is the limit. I believe that this is such a wonderful message for children. We, as parents, limit our own children more than we think. When I first took my kids to their 4H Lego Robotics club, I was completely blown away. I had no idea that my kids could put some blocks together, plug them into a computer, program them, and create a moving robot. An example of kids who can accomplish anything…

Christmas in Florida

Christmas in Florida
December tenth today and I swam my thirty laps in the pool. It’s pretty chilly, but I don’t really feel it after the second lap. I am so grateful that I am able to keep swimming this late into the season. My body responds much better to swimming than it does to running, and I still get a great cardio work out.
This is our seventh or eighth Christmas in Florida now. To be honest, it wasn’t much of an adjustment for me. I have lived in climates where we got tons of snow. I even graduated from high school in Northern Michigan, but I really don’t miss it. I am a worrier, so snow just makes me think of bad roads and car accidents. I think snow is absolutely gorgeous, but I don’t like the cold. I would be perfectly happy if snow stayed on mountains. I would visit it to ski.
I finally convinced my husband for the first time this year that we really did not need a tree. He is partial to real ones, and I have no real love for artificial trees. Not once in all of the years…