Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Rant #17: Don't Sell Me On Cell Phones

I know that we are in the high-tech age, where information is virtually at our fingertips.

I know that it is nice--and oftentimes a necessity--to be in touch with friends and loved ones.

However, I really can't stand cell phones and what they have done to society.

It would please me to say that most people are responsible with their cell phones, but alas, I really don't think I can ever make that statement. Most people that I know (and see around me) completely misuse this privilege. They use the phone during the most inopportune times, such as when they are driving, when they are at work, when they are food shopping, and when they are attending a movie or concert.

I have a cell phone, but it is an antique. I bought it a few years ago, and it really doesn't do anything but make phone calls. It doesn't take pictures, doesn't fold into my pocket, and doesn't do the myriad other things that today's cell phones do. And I like it like that.

I rarely use the phone. It has helped me out of a couple of scrapes, especially when my old car broke down. Other than that, I pay per use, so every three months I pay a flat fee and add x amount of time onto the phone. I have more than 700 extra minutes on the phone, and I will never use this time up.

I see people not paying attention to the road or anyone around them when they are on these things. Even though in New York it is illegal to talk on these phones (and text message) when you drive, I see countless people each day on the phone when they are behind the wheel. I have also nearly had a number of accidents because people can't talk and drive at the same time.

Not only that, but people use their phones in a rude way. The other day, I witnessed a woman having an argument with someone on the phone. I mean, does anybody need to hear someone else's personal business?

What did we do without cell phones? We made calls when they were necessary, mainly at home, but if necessary, at a pay phone. We did not yak about nothing in the supermarket or while driving.

I think the phone has become the new adult toy, but people act like babies when using these things.

I wish driving penalties, in particular, were increased for those caught using these things while driving. Since the cops are basically turning their backs on those using these phones, let's make the penalties stiffer, which would certainly give them more incentive to pull someone over when they are using the phone while driving. Let's make it a $1,000 fine for using the phone while behind the wheel, and the phone gets taken away, and has to be picked up at the local precinct the cop works out of.

I don't know if that would deter people from using these phones unsafely, but I know that it would scare the heck out of me.


  1. However those mostly involve the failure of some cell phone users to follow normative social behavior, and common sense safety procedures.

    I really enjoy your blog Larry. I do wish that others would comment at times:).

  2. Bobb:
    I am sure that people are visiting the blog--the counter and other means that I have to check say they are. I have tried to publicize the blog through various avenues, but so far to no avail.

    As for cell phones, don't get me wrong ... they are wonderful devices. I just think that people are extending their childhoods by using them as toys, and they are exhibiting childish behavior while doing so. It just gets me real angry they way they handle these things.

  3. Here's the most outrageous bad cell phone behavior I've encountered.
    I was waiting in a grocery line and a guy two customers ahead of me was talking on the phone instead of focusing on on getting through the line. When the woman in front of him complained, he turned around and angrily said "I'm on the phone!".

  4. I have had a similar situation. People think they are in their own virtual phone booths, and how dare you interrupt them. It is truly pitiful.



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