Smartphone, Schmartphone

So much time can be wasted on a computer.  Despite what some of my friends and family thinks, I really try to minimize the alone time I have with the internet and our love/ hate relationship.   All the new social media takes time away from actual socializing.  It’s dangerous, mind-numbing, and distracting.  So someone tell me why I bought a smart phone this summer?

I used to pride myself on the minimal amount of time I would spend on my computer in the summer.  When I’d come home from Germany I’d almost never be on it.  I spent all my time playing with my nephews, running around trying to spend time with all of my friends and family, and just enjoying Maine.  I’d get on my computer to send out a couple emails once a week but that was it really.

This summer with my new smartphone I still don’t use my computer.  In fact, I use it even less than ever but I can’t be proud of my unplugged life; this freakin’ phone has everything!!  Literally everything.  I have an app on my phone for all my most frequently visited sites: Facebook, BDN, Pinterest, Instagram, craiglist, frontrush (a recruiting website), and so, so, many more.  My phone even lets me text and chat with my friends in other countries—for free! It’s called What’s App, check it out.

Actually, you know what?  Better yet, don’t check it out.  If you are like my parents and haven’t bought a smartphone yet (anyone??), don’t do it.

Less than two months ago I had a slide-open cell phone (only one small step up from the beloved and archaic Razor flip phone).  I was pretty content with calling and texting people on my phone but all around me were smart phones.  These smart phone people with their “chat-style” texting didn’t realize that some of us (me) had to open each text individually.  They corrected misspellings in a new text or answered with a new text for every thought.  “Come on people,” I’d think. “Cram everything you are thinking into one text, please.”

New Samsung SGH A777 ORANGE Slider Cell Phone 3G AT&T

It was so time consuming and frustrating that I switched to my sister’s carrier and am on her family plan, one that is even 50% cheaper than my previous one.

This little mini-computer they call a “Galaxy S,” that fits in the palm of my hand is always with me.  I can’t get away from it.  I know it’s silly to always be checking it but I can’t help it, it’s right there.  And when I am waiting for an email the thing takes forever to boil.

You know when you get something new and you wonder how you ever lived without it?  Smartphones are like that but I don’t wonder at all.  I absolutely do not need all of this information (especially what my junior year prom date is having for dinner) at my fingertips.  The fact of the matter is I did live without my smartphone.  I had a great life without this thing but, like everyone else, I could never go back.

People expect you to be available by email, text, or Facebook all hours of the day.  Now I even expect that of myself.  Ugh.  It’s not the cell phone companies that have caused this “plugged in” world; it’s the people who have demanded it.  We all need to control our usage and get back to being where we are, not texting or Facebooking and wondering where everyone else is.

Last week on a camping trip a friend and I decided to go 24 hours without using our smartphones and/or the internet.  It was easy.  If I hadn’t been expecting a call I would have kept the thing off for another 24.

Smartphones don’t distract people, we distract ourselves.  I pray that I am in the honeymoon stages when we just can’t keep our hands off each other and I plan to do a better job staying off my phone in the future.

Danielle Clark

About Danielle Clark

I am 28 years old and for 5 years out of college I played basketball for a living. I was a professional basketball player in Europe so I spent most of my years there and came back to Maine for summers and a couple weeks at Christmas time. I thought my years there would open my eyes to what I want to be when I "grow up." That didn't happen. I have discovered, however, that I just have to try something. Just do things and toss myself into them. I have currently tossed myself into being a college basketball assistant coach and one on one reading tutor. I grew up in Corinna, Maine and have been a resident Mainer. I love sports, reading, writing, cooking, baking, watching movies... everything. I have lots of hobbies and not enough time in the day!