Oops. Wrong photo.
You may detect a caustic tone to my words. Wondering what's got me riled up? It's simple. Hundreds of people milling around in the airport, walking, running, hurrying to get to a gate where boarding has already begun and the flight is scheduled to depart in 11 minutes. Does a situation like this, one where if you don't make this flight you'll have to wait another seven and a half hours before you can get on another one, hinder communicating? No, not if you and your cell phone are equipped with Bluetooth technology. Conversations can continue while you hustle across blocks and blocks of airport concourses. You'd think I'd be used to this by now, seeing or hearing someone speaking to an invisible someone. And I am used to seeing it, just not comfortable with hearing personal - or what should be personal - conversations. Example: A guy strides past me in the Dallas airport. He's engaged in a heated discourse with some poor soul about how he - The Strider -had been stood up the evening before. Articulated in strident, full bodied tones and flamboyantly foul word choices, everyone within hearing distance, (from Gate 18 to at least Gate 20), now knows precisely how he feels about Pamela, the no-show-date. Strider had a total lack of concern that complete strangers could hear everything he was saying to his Bluetooth contact. I was embarrassed for him. And relieved for Pamela.
It's such an odd sight. Someone talking to no visible being. But the more prevalent sight among passengers seated in waiting areas was hand communication. No, not the use of American Sign Language. Texting. A seemingly universal staple used to convey information. A valuable tool, Texting is, for quick communication and Q & As:
"Flight delayed 2 hrs."
"Can u still pick me up?"
"No. LOL. Of course"
"Meet me at Joe's? 10?"
"Got the job!"
"9, Bertha's, drinks r on me."
"I'll be there"
Quick. Tidy. Efficient. I get it. What I don't get, and this is especially true when someone has a companion(s) to talk to, is why they're "talking" to someone other than that person or persons they're traveling with. Husband and wife sitting together, no talking, both of them texting. (Saw that many times and wondered if they were texting each other.) Couples, small families, large families. Everywhere I looked - and this is not an exaggeration - I saw eyes down, fingers skittering over phone keys and tops of heads. Not all of them pretty tops of the heads either. If it hadn't been for children, the sound of voices would have been minimal. Makes me concerned about the future of verbal communication. And good grammar. And diction. And vocabulary. And signatures. And penning full-bodied sentences. Or using a pen at all.
I suppose if my life was hectic and packed with responsibilities, places to go, people to see, I'd go the way of Texting. But it isn't and I don't so I'll just stick to phone calls, emails and hand-written letters. May take longer and use up more time, but to me, it's time well spent.