I actually know a few people who aren’t on Facebook, don’t have smartphones, or Instagram and they seem pretty content with their lives. They have managed to create a life that is still connnected to the world and other people, and they are friends of mine. Sometimes we actually have phone conversations. When we do, it is not an emergency. We text one another and check in and in one case we use Messenger and Skype. You wouldn’t know that they aren’t connected like a lot of other people just to look at them, but they are out there, seemingly not worried about what’s being posted or who’s where in the moment. I straddle the world of technological conversation with mailing postcards and birthday cards and thank you notes.
What concerns me, is that we continue to have more ways than ever to keep in touch and yet some of the old school ways, like a phone call, sitting at a telephone table, has gone the way of the hoop skirt and spats. I also struggle with trying to see the nuances between one emoji and another. It is a source of stress, in that I don’t want to use the incorrect one and give someone the wrong impression. It is another language that I find difficult to translate at times. I do give it a try but I realize that I use the same ones over and over again and that makes me feel as though I am not trying hard to figure out how to exactly communicate my feelings. They are certainly somewhat efficient little characters. I am not sure what the difference is between laughing with tears and laughing with tears sideways. I wish there was a cheat sheet that I could reference while I am efficiently texting my message.
So, talk to me. After a while the texting is just too labor intensive. Most of the people I communicate with are near a phone, cell or otherwise. In the time it takes to text, we could talk about so many things and switch topics and gossip about other people. My FHB claims that his fingers are too big and he can’t figure out how to text more efficiently. I become the texter in the family. We are also not on the same phone plan. He’s an android and I’m an iPhone. He can’t really answer my phone and his phone confuses me. One more reason we talk every day around noon. My spouse telepathy is usually good enough to catch him eating his lunch with his mouth full. He will sounds irritated and hiss at me “how do you know when I am eating?” I don’t need a text or an emoji to know he eats at the same time every day which is the same time I call. I guess that it is good that he doesn’t use emojis. I can read his face, through the phone. I can hear him smiling. I can do that with a lot of people and that is the connection that keeps on going. A picture of a small smiley face may be worth a thousand words or bytes or characters, but a good conversation can’t be recreated with the press of a finger. Keep talking, I’m listening.