December 8, 2007

Death By Cell Phones

What's the worst thing that technology has made us be? The obvious would be the lack of privacy but over a very bland preparation of pasta, which my friends thought was nice as it was understated, I got to hear something we often notice but disregard. One of them told me that thanks to cell phone we are innocent no more.

What's a cell phone got to do with innocence?

Flashback a few years and picture an old phone. Don't flashback to the times of the black MTNL issued round dial ones, the push buttons ones would do just fine. Now imagine the phone ringing. You pick up the receiver from the 'cradle' and offer an enthusiastic 'Hello' into it. This hello had a lot of meanings and possessed the power to almost convey exactly how the hell you felt at the very moment. Your 'Hello...?' was greeted by an equally eager 'Hi...' from the other end of the receiver. It was exciting. It was so sweet. You'd wonder who could this be in case you didn't know already. Then the voice would say, 'How are you?' and it would set the ball rolling.

Today, the first thing you do is wonder about the phone number that flashes on your cell phone screen or the landlines that display information. You take several seconds and with each passing one the excitement wanes. Finally when you connect, the voice at the other end gruffs into the phone. What kills the entire thing is that they ask, 'Where are you?’ Notice anything different? Then 9 out of 10 times you lie about your whereabouts. You with-holding the truth is an entirely different area of debate but that is what cell phones have ushered in- an era where telephone innocence is dead.

What annoys me about the whole issue is that most people who call you on your cellular phone assume that you'd know them. If not know, then at least you'd recall them as soon as they connect to you. Why? Just ‘coz I have a memory doesn't mean that I wouldn't respect it. As it is I don't know where all and who all have access to my cell number; I get 10 calls a day where someone or the other is convinced that I need a loan or I require a wedding planner.

Wedding planner?

I got your attention, right?

For research purposes I called the 'Just Dial' services and asked them for the numbers of DVD rental shops in Delhi, Florists, Wedding Planner and what have you. First they ask for your cell phone number for they now only SMS the details and though they may be overflowing when it comes cellular call etiquette, they need to stop divulging information to service providers. Within minutes of calling them I got three calls from wedding planners! I got so miffed that I actually discussed my so-called 'impending' marriage and tell you what I have booked a helicopter for my grand entry! That'd sure beat the hell out snarling in traffic jams!

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1 Responses to “Death By Cell Phones”

  • Caller ID for screening calls is a good thing but there should be a punishment for people who assign annoying ringtones & don't mute them in public places - Tivi
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