In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Undo.”
Oh, this one is so simple that I can’t imagine anything being on the list before it, Text Messaging! To me there are fewer things in the world that should be handled in different ways than communicating solely by text. You lose every ounce of nuance, emotion, or even humor. Plus it allows the person to hide behind the walls of electrons, leaving no room for discussion.
I used to ask someone to let me know when they were running late. Just a simple text saying, “Hey traffic stinks, gonna be a while”! That’s what text messages were meant to cover. Reminders to do something, maybe a quick joke in the middle of the day, and sometimes a way to tell someone you love them when they randomly pop into your mind. These days people want to have entire conversations, very personal conversations over the course of 140 character blurbs [sure they can wrap the messages into something longer, but you get the point].
Having been on the receiving end of a message that read “I can’t do this any more. Don’t contact me ever again.” maybe my viewpoint is swayed by that memory. Ending a 10 year relationship that way is confusing. And yes, we haven’t spoken a word since that day. Even about some very important things that have transpired since.
Now would I miss getting a traffic update before leaving the house? Maybe. Do I like that since my 6 year old nephew has an amazing vocabulary, but limited spelling skills he actually picks up the phone and calls at random times. Most Definitely! Somewhere along the lines we are losing our ability to effectively communicate. Kids are missing out on what it was like to sit around in a group and just talk to one another. The joy and fear of asking some girl out to the movies is gone, that nervous voice on the phone uttering such simple words. Now they sit in that same group, talking to one another, but not really communicating.
I miss opening up the mail and finding some handwritten letter.
Do I have an alternative? Pick up the phone and talk. Even five minutes on the phone means so much more than 30 minutes of inane texts.