Wednesday, November 22, 2006

My Subtle Rebellion

I believe in the States, people say "cell phone" or "mobile phone" or maybe just "cell" when they refer to their phones. Here, in general, if you use any phrase other than "hand phone" with a local, you'll get a blank stare. This is a direct translation, as far as I can tell, from the Chinese, "shou ji" which means literally, "hand machine."

I think Singaporeans are probably even more apt to carry a hand phone and use it than people in the States. In fact, many people don't have a land line. If you are giving your "particulars" (personal information) to someone, they will insist on a hand phone number. They don't even want your home number.

Now, I homeschool my kids. I'm home most of the day. And when I'm out, I do like the convenience of having my phone, but I'm not attached to it. In fact, at the moment, I am unaware of the location of my hand phone. I'm started to get mildly concerned (and yes, I have tried calling it. It's turned off). But my point is that in part, I don't want to attached at the hip, no pun intended, to my phone. To me, the need to be able to call or message someone and have them always available or respond immediately, smacks of the need for instant gratification. Have we lost all patience? Have we forgotten what life was like before hand phones and email? Before answering machines even? Remember when we were kids and we called our friends and the line was busy? We had to call back. What if they weren't even home - my word, what did we do?! Oh yeah, we waited and called again. Yeah, convenience is great, my life is blessed because of it. But I don't want to let my life be run by it.

Now I'm off to hunt for that phone. I'm sure someone's tried to call or message me and they're annoyed that I haven't responded.

1 comment:

Sherri said...

I agree! I have often wondered what college life would have been like with cell phones, email, and chat. I'm afraid the new generation will not learn patience as we had to. "sigh"