ROSE NOLEN: You can survive a while without your phone

Tuesday, March 12, 2013 | 6:00 a.m. CDT

Some people don’t go anywhere without their telephone. I would suspect that they take it to the bathroom when they go in the middle of the night. They’re afraid they’ll miss calls.

I probably miss a lot of calls. I can only hope that my callers will call back until they reach me. I can’t imagine that people would expect me to have my phone with me all the time in expectation that friends will call and want to talk.

Before cellphones became so popular people only had home or office phones, and they only used their office phones for business during the day and reserved social calls for evenings on their home phones. But when cellphones came on the market, it seems people began to use them full time for everything.

Nowadays, there are all kinds of portable, technological equipment, and so people carry their offices around with them. Unfortunately, individuals no longer separate their work from their social lives, and some are getting weary of work because they never seem to get any rest.

It’s probably safe to say that a lot of people love their gadgets. Some of them would rather play on them than do anything else. Mainly, they want to connect with other people just because they have the means to do so. They want to know what other people are doing.

With all these means to get in touch, many people have gotten lost. They have confused their work time with their social lives. They are no longer able to separate the parts of their lives. It’s as if they have added their personal friends to the address book in their computer.

Because they are so attached to their jobs by technology, they no longer have regular work hours. Many times they receive calls at home, after work hours, and feel guilty if they do not return the call. And if they work from home, they almost feel that they are always at work.

Some people have phones, tablets and all kinds of electronic devices that keep them connected to a workplace. They feel that if they are not plugged in at all times they will be out of touch. It almost seems that if they are not connected to a job, they don’t count as a person. Work, as far as some people are concerned, has become the only reason for existence.

There are people who have come to consider what they do in life as a part of their identity. "My name is John Doe, and I am a postman" is how they identify themselves. It’s almost as if being unemployed is a disgrace, even if you don’t need to work for a living.

Every now and then, somebody will bring up the need for a pay phone. I haven’t seen one in years. Fortunately, most of the time you can borrow a phone if you don’t have one. The good news is, I really think that people are a lot safer on the streets because of cellphones. You can get the police faster if you have one.

After all, you might have to get to work.

You can join the conversation with Rose M. Nolen by calling her at 882-5734 or emailing her at Questions? Contact Opinion Editor Elizabeth Conner.

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Michael Williams March 12, 2013 | 9:59 a.m.

I agree with Rose on this one.

Somehow folks are no longer comfortable within their own thoughts and minds. They are terrified of "quiet" and being alone with...horrors!...themselves.

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