A play partner I sometimes visit once made a comment while I was in the car with him: “What would you do without your cell phone?” implying that I couldn’t live without being connected. At the time I was answering a text from my SO. It wasn’t like I was on the phone continually while I was there. In fact out of courtesy I hadn’t called my SO at all during the trip, and had limited my contact with him, my OSO and children to brief emails or text messages during the four days I was visiting. I had even told the others (in particular my then-gf) with whom I usually communicated daily, that I would be unavailable during that time. Still, his comment stung—was I “too connected”? Obviously he thought so (which kind of put my back up, since I DO have two serious partners with whom I had deliberately curtailed my communications in deference to spending my time with him.)
Since that time I have thought about this question, as it has also come up with W and the fact that I frequently bitch lament about the fact that he will not text and doesn’t see the value in it.
I am very connected. I recognize this. Text, email, Twitter, blogging, IM, Fetlife updating. I read work and personal email on my cellphone, I can tweet from there if I choose, I obviously text and can IM from there as well. I am seldom farther than my cellphone from multiple sources of communication. And I like it. I choose to be connected like this. I am not talking about emailing while I am out at dinner with friends, or stopping in the middle of fucking to send a “oh wow I am fucking the hottest guy!’ tweet, or IMing during dinner with the fam; I monitor when and where I respond, and I do happen to use good sense, am polite and sensitive to common courtesies.
But when the hell did it become a bad thing to be connected? What’s wrong with it? Why has it become something that people sneer at? I like emailing W throughout the day, I like chatting off and on with my various friends & lovers, I enjoy texting with my daughter & Ad, I like following online friends via their blogs and Twitter. I can be disconnected from people when I choose to be, I go places and deliberately turn off the technology, but I’ll be honest, most times I don’t want to be disconnected. And I don’t think there’s anything wrong with it.
I’ll admit that I’m thinking about it here and now because I am sitting here in a 4-day long 8-hrs per day meeting while W waits at the hotel. He doesn’t have a computer with him because he doesn’t have a laptop, and so I have no ability to enjoy our usual daily back-and-forth emails, and while I am not missing that too much yet, I can guarantee that by EOD tomorrow, and even more so by Wednesday or Thursday, I am really going to be missing it. My solution would be to be able to text him occasionally throughout the day, like I do Ad, but I can’t do that either. So…I am a little pissy about the fact that he sees no value in it.
Yeah, yeah, I know I am being a baby about the texting, and that’s just me being whiny because I’m sitting here having to listen to someone drone on and on about database clean-up when I’d rather be texting W about the one cute in my group and how I’d like to proposition him, ask him if he’s ever seen a girl with steel rings in her cunt…knowing that it’d be as fun for W to hear about all that as it would be for me to share it with him. But okay, I get it that that may not be a valid reason to have texting. lol
Still, although I am being facetious about that part of it, I do think there is a larger issue, a larger question. When did it become a bad thing to want to be connected, and why is it a bad thing?