Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Don't text me, bro

I apologize in advance for this rant, but it's been a long time a-comin'...and to all my new friends I met at the JJB Dinner, please take my word for it; I'm not always like this!

Aw shit, yes I probably am...

Anyway, here's a conversation I seem to find myself in all too often these days:

"Bob, did you get my text?"

"I don't text."

"Whaddaya mean, you don't text?"

"I don't believe in it."

"Whaddaya mean you don't believe in it?"

You might recognize that I cast myself in the iconic "Mr. Pink" role from "Reservoir Dogs" to make my point.

However, I DO tip. Generously. So this analogy stops well short of the tipping issue.

Look, it's really quite simple. I don't do text. I hate texting. In fact, I've blocked it from even being received by my phone, because the plan I have charges me 20 cents for every text I get, whether I read it or not. I eventually had Sprint put a block on all texts coming to my cell phone.

Yes, I'm aware I can probably get a cost-efficient plan that includes all the texting I'd ever want to do. But since I don't want to do any texting, my plan already includes "none texting". Free of charge!

I know that in this day and age it's expected that a somewhat technophiliac like myself will take part in this relatively recent innovation in personal communications, but I prefer not to. And I have a list of good reasons for it:

1) It's very intrusive and encourages all manner of nonsense. Read almost anyone's Twitter feed and you'll see what I mean. I couldn't give a solid shit what you just ate for lunch; and I couldn't possibly care less about whatever cute thing your stupid cat is doing right now, unless it's in the process of being run over by a garbage truck on a gravel road.

In that case, feel free to call me with the good news.

(Because apparently I hate texting so much, I hope everyone who texts me will lose a beloved pet in some horrific manner. Hey, I never claimed to possess a fair, or even remotely humane sense of proportion.)

2) It annoys the fuck out of me when I'm speaking to someone face to face and they suddenly whip out their little keyboard phone thingy and start thumbing the keys like a mental case. Look, whatever it is you're replying to can't possibly be more imperative than what I was just in the process of telling you. I know that sounds kind of self-important, but hey, this is me we're talking about here.

3) Let's face it. I know in my heart if I become addicted to texting, it'll only be a matter of time before I plow into the back of a school bus at seventy miles per. Apparently I make a habit of driving on local suburban lanes at roughly three times the legal limit. Driving that fast is hard enough, so I sure don't need to add texting to the distraction of scanning through the songs on my mp3 player.

Here's the deal: if whatever it is you have for me is so goddamned important, just call me on my cell, or shoot me a quick email. Or you can even write it down on a piece of paper, wrap it around a brick, and hurl it through my living room window. Whatever works best for you.

So please, stop asking me if I got your text.

I didn't....

...but your cat had better be real careful!

(Disclaimer: no cats or other useless objects were harmed during the making of this rant)


West Haven Bob said...


SOMEONE got up on the wrong side of the cell phone, hmmm?

Why not limit those who have your cell phone number? Sometimes texting is more useful and faster than talking. (And, my plan costs me five're getting hosed, bro!)

Connecticut Man1 said...

We use texting in our family more than calling. I do not like talking on the phone so short texts that get to the point are appreciated. Never mind that we shareimages that way too. But I can appreciate your pov on this. If I didn't drive around in a jalopy that could break down anywhere I probably would not even need a cell phone.

ctblogger said...

Reading this post reminded me of an argument I had with my dad back in 1987 that centered around his stubborned resistance to switch to a touch-tone phone...and he worked for the phone company.

Bob, try the green eggs and ham, you'll like it!

tessa said...

I had to leave a voice message on your phone this afternoon.

I don't trust voice messages, because I always forget to listen to my own, so I am assuming you didn't get my message. You don't have IM either. Therefore, I am writing this note on your blog so that you might remember to listen to your phone messages./snark

[Incidentally, texts get through when the signal is poor, so it works better than talking on the cellphone in my neighborhood.]

Dan, Lauren, Abby and Connor said...

Tessa Bob doesn't return my calls. I guess my twice a year calls are to much trouble.

Jonathan Kantrowitz said...

I don't text either - in fact I go one step further - I don't keep my cell phone on!

And I don't even go on-line weekends - I like being out of touch!

CT Bob said...

Dan, don't feel bad. I don't return calls from lots of people, even sometimes from my own family.

You wouldn't believe how pissed that makes Joyce!

vagabondblogger said...

I don't text except when I'm traveling, i.e. "boarding in Cairo," "arrived Frankfurt." Then I can send it to the whole family, instead of making separate calls. This way they know my travel status. Otherwise, I don't text.

carterman said...

I hate talking to people, so texting works for me.

What I can't stand is all the idiots texting/talking while driving! F%#*ing morons! I actually saw some jackass looking up a number on one mobile device while dialing on another phone while going down 95 at 65mph steering with her knee! WTF!!!

Seriously is it worth killing someone so you can send a meaningless text message?

Lastly, don't talk to me if you have a wireless blue tooth thing in your ear. I can't tell if you are talking to me, yourself, or someone on the other end of the line. A guy walking across the parking lot says, "Where about in Maryland?" while looking right at me. The question makes no sense to me so I think he is talking on his blue tooth ear thing. The guy stops looks right at me and repeats the question. I respond with, "huh??" Well, I had a rental car and it had Maryland plates. I tell him I am not from Maryland and he walks away just as bewildered as me. Ughh. Just don't talk to me with that thing in your ear. Better yet, just send me a text message!

Sorry about my mini-rant Bob.