What happened to manners? There seems to be a decided lack in manners anymore. I am sure there are many different reasons and things to blame, but one in particular came to mind today... technology.
Now, I know what you are thinking... you are thinking just what the hell am I talking about, well I will tell you.
Lets start with a simple one shall we. Holding doors open for people. It use to be common that when you entered a building you opened the door and if there was someone behind you it was held for them. If the gesture was truly generous perhaps the door was held for others to walk in first with you following. It seems so simple and yet I do not see it much anymore. I think technology is partly to blame. Who has to hold open doors anymore when they are automatically opened for you? Doesn't seem to matter what store you enter anymore, the doors slide open when you step in front of them, leaving you without worry for the next person to pass through. So what happens when you encounter a door that doesn't seem to have this magic touch? Well, if you are lucky enough not to walk into it with your head leading the way you might actually have to reach out your hand and pull it open. This is where the trouble begins. People are so use to not worrying about the next person they just let that door close without thinking about it. Leaving those people to fend for themselves.
Next... how about conversations. Private and professional both have suffered from the cell phone craze that has swept across this world. People talk so much on the phone they forget to talk to the person in front of them. The phone rings and people answer it, no matter what they might be doing. It become ingrained in people to answer a phone when it rings, and some people do not have the ability to say "hold on for a minute". Distinctly annoying. It is especially bad when it is a clerk in a store, someone who is more worried about the person who called than the one who took the time to actually show up in person. Not sure that it is the correct importance. I think I will just ignore the whole cell phone driver in general for now.
Hmm... one more perhaps?
Ever tried to talk to someone with an ipod connected to their brain? Nuff said.
In the words of George Carlin "Technology has given us these self important twits."
Now, I realize that these are not bad things. I have a cell phone and an ipod, and I know I appreciate not having to open a door when my hands are full. They are fun, useful, and sometimes necessary items, the trick is not to let them rule your actions to a point of indifference to other people.
A person who takes a phone call does not draw bad feelings from me if they do it politely. My cell phone saves on trips to town because people can call and let me know to pick up something, and I am sure my Ipod has saved lives at work for letting me be in my own world and not have to deal with some people. It is not a matter of the item, but what kind of attitude it leads to. Hold a door. Try having a conversation face to face. Listen to people once in a while.
Do you control your technology or does it control you?