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August 14, 2003
Your Pocket Is Singing

Personally, I'm not really interested in a guy moaning about his failure to pick up a woman in the airport.

I wonder if it ever occurred to him that she might be on the phone to save herself from the advances of strangers?

Contrary to what many men seem to believe, it's not really that easy for a woman to rebuff an unwelcome advance. At least not when said advance is made politely. Women aren't unaware of the fact that men have feelings and egos. Nor are they unaware of the courage it takes to approach someone.

This makes it very awkward when, as sometimes happens, the woman looks at the man and feels not only no spark of interest, but a definite (let's be polite) disinclination to pursue even a limited acquaintance.

Still, I sympathize with his point of view. People in this country are, it seems, neurotically averse to being alone. Anyone walking down the street without a companion seems to feel compelled to pull out a phone. Ditto people standing in lines, eating out, driving down the street, and shopping. It's astounding how few people seem able to bear the burden of their own, solitary companionship for even a few minutes.

I mean, you see someone sitting on a shaded bench in a green park. Are they enjoying the fresh air and sunshine and watching the ducks play? No, they're yakking on the phone.

How many times have you been stuck behind someone in a check-out line at a store who can't seem to get their merchandise paid for because they're too busy talking on the phone to listen to the clerk at the register?

And I don't think any of us hasn't heard of the dangers associated with people yakking on the phone while driving. I'm not certain which is my favorite the guy driving like he doesn't notice other cars, because talking is more interesting than watching the road, or the guy so involved in his conversation that he forgets what the accelerator is for when the light in front of him turns green. Either way, the part where they're steering a thousand pounds of fuel-laden machine down a street or highway full of innocent bystanders seems to be the least of their concerns.

If I were a bumper sticker kind of person, I'm sure, "Hang Up and Drive" would be on my car.

But it's a larger problem than just morons with cars.

Why are people so reluctant to be alone? What is it about themselves they're so afraid of facing if they're left with the thoughts in their own minds for ten minutes?

Admittedly I'm a raving egotist, but I find the privacy and freedom of my own thoughts very entertaining. I've never understood people who view the possibility of being by themselves for five minutes, or five hours, as an ordeal to be survived.

What's wrong with you people?

Posted by AnneZook at 12:04 PM


Comments

Well, bubby, some people don't like themselves at all, you know they're very insecure. They have no worth except that they feel through another's regard. They worry insanely over what people they don't know and may never see again are thinking about them. And some people really do think you're nobody till somebody loves you. I don't like to think of that many people mired down in self-loathing either, but I gather that's the case.

Posted by: Mel at August 14, 2003 07:30 PM

Well, I'm glad we're not like that, that's all.

Posted by: Anne at August 14, 2003 08:23 PM

I have no use for people on public streets and other venues who cocoon themselves with their cell phones but act totally clueless as to what's going on around them, but I do like the connection aspect of it all. Certainly came in handy yesterday on the bus ride through the blackout...

Posted by: Elayne Riggs at August 15, 2003 10:35 AM