I loved the age when technology could not touch me, could not pervade my senses, could not creep into my personal space. If someone wanted to reach me on the phone, they would leave messages for me on my landline, and I would call back, at my leisure. When friends made plans, we didn’t end up constantly texting each other to check where they were; we waited patiently instead. When I was wooed by someone, it wasn’t an emoji that expressed feelings or desires, I got real flowers. I don’t anymore.
I preferred the days when my online presence wasn’t stalked, when people didn’t ask me why I was online but chose not to respond to them, or why I can’t simply text back. The truth is I’m not a text person. I’m not even a phone person, but that is probably another issue. I’m a person that lives on experiences. Thrives on actual, physical, human company. Somehow, technology has reduced me to a series of texts instead. And the people around me are not much different. I’ve turned into a more virtual me than a physical me. People look at me askance when I say, “No, I’m not much of an FB person”, “No, I don’t use Instagram”, “Really, what’s SnapChat?”
Not to say I’m some minimalist, anti-technology, get-back-to-the-feudal-age kind of a person. I enjoy technology, in fact, I can’t imagine living without it. But I don’t sit in coffee shops, incessantly texting people who aren’t present with me, either.
I like hearing a person’s voice. Watching their face. Observing their gestures. A wink to indicate that something is being said in play. Or see eyes go wide when I reveal something crazy or embarrassing about myself. Those are the kind of conversations I love. But technology has taken the spirit and the kick I get out of spending time with people. These days, I’m just a collection of words on a screen.
That’s not me. Not even remotely.