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Modern Day Inconvenience

[Photo: Fading from black to sunshine by Martin Kimeldorf]

In keeping with the theme of this week's contemplation...

What is something that most people consider a modern day convenience that you consider a pain in the neck?1

I would have to say the cell phone. I appreciate the need to have one for emergencies, but I have become frustrated with people expecting me to be available at all times. I feel that this infringes on my right to "me" time -- alone time. Although turning the phone off, or not answering the phone, seems to be a logical solution, it seems that the expectation that a person should always be able to be reached has also bred increased worry. Surely something must be wrong if she isn't answering her phone...if she isn't available for an hour....

1Question selected from The Conversation Piece by Nicholaus and Lowrie

I'll second the cell phone. I almost never answer my cell phone when it rings, often out of principle. I will call whoever it is back when I'm not otherwise occupied.

I'd like to add the Blackberry [the email functionality] to the modern "pain in the neck" list. I, personally, love being available by email. It's probably the most effective way to get ahold of me (especially since I rarely answer my cell phone immediately :) ). But I don't need to have my email accessible every second of every day. More importantly, and this relates to your weekly theme of loss of interpersonality, people will respond to emails on their Blackberry anytime, anywhere, anyhow, regardless of who they are, or were, interacting with.

I hate mobile phones and I particularly dislike listening to others using them in shops.

Cars are a pain too. Call me old-fashioned!

Cell phone - I refuse to have one - apart from the fact that they are unusable here because of our geogrpahical location - I wont tolerate the intrusion !

Call Waiting.

Hate, hate, hate it... If I want to click over, I will. If I'm in the middle of a conversation with someone else, clicking over is rude. And people get their tail feathers all ruffled when you hear a beep and don't click over.

Ooof, yeah, I'm really bad with call waiting sometimes.. when I switch over and the new person is somebody I'd much rather talk to than the first.. I've had a couple times where I get a good 3 or 4 minutes into the second conversation before I even remember I was on the first, and then I switch back.. heh.. not good.


I think my best answer for this one is text messages.. I think used in the right context, they can't be beat.. i miss you.. i love you.. i just got 1023 lines in tetris.. etc.

But, at 4am, when it's "prdccb.xai has failed 3 times", from my own monitoring application at work... I hate them. I don't miss them. Don't love them. I just want to turn the phone off altogether and sleep. Only... /sigh.. now something's down, and it -is- my responsibility to fix whatever it is. (more recently I don't care as much, and I do go back to bed, but that's another story altogether) During the day, it's a nice convenience to know things are broken before people even have a chance to call to report it... makes it so we can fix things before folks notice... but at night, i hate it.

I was thinking about it, and I find it odd that I say that my cell bugs me, but I feel weird if I leave the house without it. Like I feel that I need to be available all the time and need to know what is going on all the time. I guess it must be a control issue.

LV7: I can't believe that you often forget that you were talking to someone on the other line when you switch over for call waiting! So hilarious...but, so maddening if I was the person who got jilted! :)

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