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Mobile phone retardation

Discussion in 'The Pub' started by DarkHorse, Mar 20, 2010.

  1. No, nothing to do with driving while on the phone...

    I am interested to get some more perspectives on an issue I had with my now ex-GF over the course of our three year relationship. It has to do with mobile phones, and our collective reliance/dependance/addiction thereof.

    She is one of those people who has their phone with them everywhere, all the time. It doesn't matter what you're doing or where you're going, or how late you are to get there, if she's left her phone behind you're turning around and going back to get it.

    Leaving a phone at a friend's place overnight, even when you can see them and get it back first thing the next day, is a catastrophe.

    I, on the other hand, see my mobile more as a necessary evil. I understand their use, and I'll admit I would struggle with certain things if I didn't have it. However, I cannot bring myself to make it the centrepiece of my day to day life... it's not the first thing I think of every waking minute. I work in theatre, so I can't have my phone with me when I do a show. I have to leave it on silent in the office, so if it does ring (again and again if someone leaves a message) it doesn't drive everyone else mad. On the whole, when I finish a show at night my first thought is to get the hell out of there and get home, at the time to be with my partner. I didn't rush back to the office to see if I had any messages or missed calls.

    She couldn't understand this. It made no sense to her that I could live without knowing if someone had tried to call me. It got to the point where she started to view it as a personal affront to her - in that if I didn't check my phone it was because I didn't care if SHE had tried to call me for something. The situation was compounded a couple of times when she tried to contact me for minor emergencies (dogs had got out, or she needed me to do something, or god forbid her phone wasn't working!) and couldn't reach me, despite her knowing full well that I am incommunicado for upwards of three hours at a time during shows.

    Another recent example occured a week or so ago, when she was up and out early for work, while I had a late start and was sleeping in. She knew I would be at home until after midday. Some understimulated little f*ck of a kid called her number from a payphone, reverse charges, and started on the whole heavy breathing, "I'm in ya farkin house right now" garbage. Obviously a prank, right? Apart from anything else, if there was someone in our house my red heeler would be barking the neighbourhood down, there's no way I could not know. Well, it flipped her out, and she tried to call me. My phone was still on silent from the night before, and in my bag at the opposite end of the house from where I was snoozing happily in bed. So I wake up with umpteen million missed calls and frantic messages, and the whole thing becomes my fault for not sleeping with my phone next to me on the pillow.

    So I guess I want to know what other people's take on this is... is it a gender difference, as she has come to suspect? Is there a psychological explanation? Is it just the way people are? Which side do you fall on, the implant waiting list or the reluctant sufferer?

    It's such an integral part of almost everyone's life these days, and yet the world turned just fine 30 years ago when no-one had one.

    Discuss. :smile:
  2. Indeed, my old boss used to say "You have 50% more technology available to you today than ten years ago, but I don't see a 50% increase in productivity". Of course there's much more to life than that, but I understood his point.

    The sad thing is, in a world where we have more means of communication than ever before, we seem not to be able to communicate about the things that really matter.
  3. Sounds to me like your problem isn't so much your phone, as it is the people who have your number... :?
  4. Kind of... it's one of the reasons I have an aversion to Facebook etc.

    The point is that I want to be able to have some control over when/how people contact me, and when they can't. I don't like the idea of being at everyone's beck and call through the mobile 24/7.

    And Paul, communicating about the things that really matter was certainly an issue, and you make a sage point, but it's not really what I'm on about...
  5. I'm a reluctant sufferer to be sure. I almost never answer it without it going to voice mail and am more than likely to have it switched off or on silent at any given time. I lived happily enough for 25 years without being instantly contactable so I didn't see much need to change when mobiles became standard fare.

    That said, almost everyone I know considers my mobile usage to be bizarre and I've had to suffer through many situations like your recent 'emergency'.
  6. Do you think it's a case of being addicted to instant information? Some have developed an emotional NEED to know whats going on ALL the time!

    Must get an iPhone so I can check Facebook / Twitter / Weather / XYZ!
    Must check my phone in case I missed an SMS.
    I've received an SMS - the whole world MUST stop! so I can answer it!
    I've received an email......etc

    It's the information age encroaching into lives and often needlessly.

    When I go camping I use my mobile to find a spot - as soon as there NO SERVICE I know it's safe to camp there :D
  7. +1 to Zaphod69, it has become an obsession with your GF, it is nothing to do with gender it is a problem. Psychiatrists call this a form of obsessive compulsive disorder.
  8. Now I want to know what you'd posted before the edit!

    I don't think it's OCD as such, or if it is it's an epidemic. It's a reliance, sure... and it's the issues involved with a very different level of reliance that interest me.
  9. its an insecurity issue - the cell phone is a lifeline of reassurance - an adults safety blanket so to speak
  10. I think it's more an attention span issue.

    I'm similiar to your ex, not as extreme, but I feel naked if I don't have my mob with me. Plus with today's mob capabilities I'm always somewhat stimulated.

    I'll put it in computer nerd for you guys :). Think about when the Internet first came about, you were happy with the one window open to surf the Internet, but the more you got used to it and the more you used it you started opening up new browsers and tabs and reading multiple sites/articles and just plainly multitasking. I think I'm sort of like that, I'll be doing my day to day activities and in between check my facebook or netrider etc.

    Plus, I'm just crazy.
  11. I've been flying quite a bit lately for work and it's really struck me that, as soon as everyone's off the plane and into the corridors of the terminal, all the mobile phones go on and I find myself stuck behind fifty shuffling morons whose entire world now consists of a tiny LCD screen to the exclusion of all else around them.

    How the hell grown adults can be so desperately dependent on a piece of technology that most didn't have access to only 15 years ago is completely beyond me.
  12. That could be to see if the person that is picking them up is late or something along those lines

    For a business person it could be to check any last minute details etc
  13. #13 fekkinell, Mar 21, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 13, 2015
  14. i think she had a lot more of a problem than phones are.

    i have a few friends who are the same though, always on their phones and their facebooks are always covered in updates (from their phones)

    each to their own i guess
  15. I'm in a cafe reading this on my iPhone......
  16. My pet gripe is the mobile phone addict who, when they are visiting you and are supposed to be conversing with you, spend all their time SMS'ing their "friends" instead.

    Of course it could also just be that I'm boring. I HAVE considered that possibility.
  17. So nothing that can't wait 30 seconds until they're in the terminal and can get out of the way of people who aren't suffering from withdrawal symptoms then...........
  18. I hate to be the one to tell you this, but .......... yes, you are boring. :p

    Seriously though, I have reached the stage where if I am out with someone who does that, I just leave. If they are visiting and busily txting then I subtly or sometimes not so subtly (depending on how good a friend they are) tell them they are being bad mannered. I have not yet reached the point of asking someone to leave, but I have been tempted on occasion.
  19. Silly question but why not just turn the bloody thing off and camp in a spot with coverage so you can turn it back on to call for help in an emergency??
  20. But that would give him nothing to complain about.