I wrote this piece when I had first gone back to school (before I was a vegetarian). I was shocked by the use of cell phones (especially in the classroom during a peer’s speech). Screen time is a necessity today as it’s our greatest medium of communication and entertainment. Yes I use my cell phone. I have snap chat. I angrily write satirical essays on my laptop. I indulge in screen time, but I’m conscious of when it becomes too much. When you can’t sleep because you’ve been staring at a white light in the dark for hours, when your neck hurts because you’ve been looking down for too long, or when you realize someone’s been talking to you and you’re half-ass listening…put the phone down.
The whole school smells pleasantly of fried chicken. I wonder if anyone else notices. I smell it, but my nose isn’t preoccupied, stuck to a screen. There is a girl making stupid faces at her phone. She’s not even trying to hide it, just making faces at her palm to send, what I assume to be, a worthless waste of the English language. Today’s handheld devices provide us with access to unnecessary, excessive, communication. A phone call would be absurd if all I had to say was, “OMG”. So instead, we send each other pictures of our contorted faces; but for what reason? Is it for the instant gratification of knowing our friends are always able to be reached? Is it just for entertainment? Is it the ever-so-addicting urge to always be occupied, to be the center of attention, or to be rewarded? People complain about time going too fast. If every second of your down time is spent scrolling through feed after feed of various social media, you can’t complain. While she’s in bed at night glued to Instagram, I’m finishing the third book I’ve read this month. While she’s texting a friend on the way to her next class, I’m watching her look like an idiot making faces at her hand as people are forced to jump out of her way. While he’s making a feeble attempt at hiding texting and driving, I’m one lane over watching what appears to be someone oh-so-fascinated with his crotch. While she’s drowning in cheap decor to make her bedroom resemble an Instagram model’s, I’m out hiking through state parks and experiencing the very planet that your absent mind is absentmindedly destroying. While you’re staring and sniffing at a screen instead of being present, I’m smelling the best fried chicken and perhaps tasting some too.
Ironically, I wrote this to post it on Facebook (and now my blog), as this is the only means to spread opinions this day in age. So if this message has reached you beneath your nose and crossed eyes, stop straining your neck and enjoy the beautiful day we’ve been gifted.
Thanks for listening,