I can’t resist any longer. It’s useless to try. I’m throwing in my cap and say the world has won. I don’t know how, but I have managed to make it to my seventy-first year without it, But, alas, the gods of all things modern are telling me, “Just get with it, Ann. There’s no use resisting.” And, as most gods, they’re right. But it doesn’t mean I have to like it, does it? I wasn’t trying to be holier-than-thou about my choice not to use it. I just thought I could slip through the rest of my life without having to adapt to a new form of communication. But, it seems, that is not to be if I want to exist in this world. Lately, everyone I encounter seems to take it for granted that I TEXT. They don’t ask me if I receive texts. Folks don’t say, “What’s the best way of reaching you?” No, they just assume that I, like what is becoming the majority of folks, prefer to receive notices, love notes, friendly banter, appointments and everything else in indecipherable half words sputtered out with quick thumb motions on a phone.
This latest push towards modernity, came when I missed an important message from one of my cat clients. When I emailed her about it — she’s now in Athens and I’m not talking Ohio — she said, “Well, I texted you.” Then I had to shamefacedly admit that, “Sorry, I don’t text. What did your message say?” Of course, if I had checked my voice mail, I would have heard the back-up message from her on Friday asking me to call before she left for Greece. I can’t blame texting on that one; just a failure on my part to check my messages. Although, I can, and do with pleasure, blame Bell for my delinquency. Of course, the way I feel about Bell, I would blame that corporate thief for everything from global warming to Donald Trump if I could. I have called them repeatedly to tell them that even though I’m paying a ridiculous amount for my voice mail, I do not have any kind of a beep, flash, or a ding of a notice to tell me I have messages. Needless to say, nothing has been done except the cost of the “service” has gone up. Maybe I’ll try again tomorrow but perhaps, instead, I’ll stick my finger in my eye which is about as pleasurable as talking to Bell and as effective.
But, in the whole scheme of things, I guess texting won’t be so terrible. Perhaps I’ll take to it and join the ranks of people who stare constantly at their phones to see if, perhaps, just maybe, someone is thinking of them at that very moment and sending non-essential words to the little apparatus in their hand. As soon as the signal comes through that someone has written to them, it usually means that if you’re talking to that same person, they will immediately ignore you and focus all their attention on the screen. It always drives me mad when folks do that. In my thinking, it doesn’t matter if, perhaps, what I’m saying is as inane as the words they’re reading, I am right in front of them so don’t I take precedence over a message that can be read a minute or two later? It never seems to so I just stop talking and wait.
But on the other hand, why not text, eh? I might just enjoy being able to set my little thumbs moving across the too-small buttons — Buttons? Is that what you call them? — as quickly as these two hands are moving over this keyboard. Think of it, I could be sending my own versions of nothingness and getting immediate replies from the recipient. But will I feel bad if no one answers me? Will I start to wonder if I insulted them some way with the words I put down in the message? I’ll have to take lessons from my Social Media and All Things Technical Guru, Sarah, to learn the proper meanings of all those abbreviations so that I’m not telling someone “I love you” instead of “Buzz-off and never talk to me again”.
Sigh, I have to do it even though it means another expense every month. Sarah and Pixel have agreed to go with me to purchase the phone and find the best Pay-As-You-Go Plan. With them by my side, I know some fast-speaking-commission-earning-underpaid sales person won’t try to put something over on this technically-challenged senior. With new phone in hand, I will bravely go into this next phase of my life with thumbs twitching out mostly unnecessary, but occasionally important, messages to other twitching thumbs out there. I won’t tell the cats I’m doing this — they’d want their own phones.