Conversations in the Age of ME
I have a love/hate relationship with technology. I love that it makes me efficient, productive and provides an ever-present source of entertainment. I hate how it has become an obsession. I find myself checking and responding to emails constantly, displaying my latent voyeur tendencies on social media and I have even noticed physical tics developing (like constantly tapping my ribs to check to see if my cell phone is in my jacket pocket).
But the worst part of technology is that it reinforces a disturbing societal trend of self absorption. We are clearly in the Age of ME. This is never more evident than sitting in a bar. Always a place of camaraderie and bonding where strangers became friends, now it is a silent temple filled with the iPhone prayer. It’s like the fun only counts if it is posted on Facebook accompanied by an emoticon.
Perhaps I just need to get on board with the idea of texting being the new art of conversation. Maybe I am simply feeling the effects of having lived a while in a changing world and my experience is exactly the same as generations before me. And strangers still do connect, but now it seems the exception rather than the rule. Perhaps some day, there will be technology free zones established in businesses to encourage genuine human connection. I will make it a point to visit, if so.