A little more than ten years ago, text messaging was a fledgling operation that was just being tested and implemented in the new and compact mobile phones. Now-a-days, text messaging is the norm and there are people out there who text exponentially more than they talk. These people are known by many names and belong to many a class of society, but the texts unite them. The fact that people such as this refuse to attain a normal hobby and have probably been in a couple of car accidents requires looking into. The phenomena of texting is one that has grabbed hold of all…and I, being a helpless victim to the incessant buzzing of my phone, believe myself to be over qualified to write about the subject. Let me just answer this text and I’ll continue…
Alright, so, where to begin? I believe I will talk first about the phenomenon so as to familiarize all with the idea of texting. A text is a possibly short length and almost incoherent fragment of a thought sent to someone in an impersonal and “I am avoiding awkwardly talking to you” kind of way. I will explain that sentence now. I say short length because the idea of a text is to communicate a small bit of information. The word incoherent goes with the previously mentioned short length because in the attempt to make the information less and the time between the texts faster, people resort to abbreviations that frankly don’t even make sense. For example, in trying to shorten the phrase, “I need to go to the new movie that just came out! It looks great!” the text would look something like this: “I nd 2g 2 da new mov dat jst cm out! It lks gr8!” As one can see, it is markedly shorter, but now it’s almost unintelligible unless you are fully fluent in the texting language. Now, another word that I will talk about is “impersonal”. Simply put, texts do not transmit any kind of emotion. Ok, stop right there. The ardent text-y will say yes, but I say NAY! If a text possesses the ability to transmit emotion, then so does the Apple robotic voice that says the time (which it of course doesn’t). I will give you an example. Here is the same text with different emotions each time…lets see you pick them out:
Can you figure out which is which? No? Didn’t think so. The correct answers were sarcastic, indifferent, and happy. Now re-read them with this newly acquired knowledge. Do you see? Neither do I. The texters have realized this and, to lend credence to their emotions, they have come up with multiple ways to place end punctuation and have invented something called “smileys”. But this is a topic for another blog. Lastly, I used the phrase “I am avoiding awkwardly talking to you” because it is exactly because of this that texting was invented. People needed a way to communicate with people they disliked without having to hear their incredibly displeasing voices.
Ok, now that we have all become properly acquainted with what a text is, I will now proceed to speak of the health and safety implications that texting brings with it. Firstly, texting is obviously a big health risk. Depending on the mobile device, the swiftness of the demise of health will change. Also, how one types affects as well (there are two types of typers: tip typers and full finger typers). It is a disease known as Carpal Tunnel. If I am allowed to translate medical terms to laymen’s terms, what the disease does is to basically make your thumbs suffer from excruciating bouts of pain. That alone should be a deterrent, but no. This alone will not quell the person that believes texting should be a day job. They will keep texting despite the pain, reminding themselves that one more text couldn’t hurt. Texting to them is like taking Vicodin in large quantities. The pain is worth it.
The next topic, safety, is at an enormous amount of risk from the so-called super texter. These people have been known to walk into certain objects/people because they were preoccupied with the little 2x3in glowing screen that occupies about 87% of their daily activities. In the car is when the worst manifestation takes place. Lets say that one day a super texter entered his car and placed his phone in the space behind the cup holders. He thinks, “Its ok…it’s within arm’s reach.” He did not count on the roads being so bumpy, though. The phone soon slides out of its spot and onto the floor of the passenger side, near the door. Now is when he realizes that there is a problem. He can't reach it and he is on an expressway doing 75 because he’s late. Then…“Z Zzzzzzzzzz” (this is my attempt at an onomatopoeia for a vibrating cellphone). A bead of sweat forms on his right eyebrow as he looks down. He swallows hard and feels his stomach sink when he sees the words that will spell his doom: “1 New Message”.
The car instantly picks up the sun as a hitchhiker and its temperature skyrockets. The super texter begins to perspire profusely and pulls at his shirt collar. “Its getting hot in here…” he thinks as he turns the air up to the maximum. This is to no avail as all that he feels in his face is his own heartbeat. Somehow, as by magic, his heart has exchanged places with his brain. The throbbing becomes more intense as his nails dig into the steering wheel and he slowly increases the speed of his vehicle. 80…82…87…he keeps looking at the glowing screen. It’s taunting him, feeding off of his energy. It keeps saying the same thing…“1 New Message”. He lets out a blood-curdling scream as he pulls his hair with one hand and dodges passing cars with the other. He feels faint…his vision is blurry…there isn’t enough air left in the car. With his last bit of strength, he finally arrives to his work and manages to park. He rips the seatbelt and slides onto the floor, knocking the passenger door open as he grabs his phone. He falls to the floor. A couple of seconds pass by…then there is a twitch of a finger. It’s his thumb…it clicks “Open Message” on the phone. The texter smiles. He has survived.
The man in the example was a major threat to himself and to his surroundings. I estimate that thousands or maybe millions of people suffer from texting anxiety every day. Whether it be from a situation such as the one above or because the phone is on the other side of the room at the time that a text arrives and the super-tuned ears of a texter pick it up. At any given moment, people, inanimate objects, and animals in the path between the texter and his phone are in severe danger as bodily damage could occur.
Now that we know what texts are and are acquainted with the health and safety hazards, only one thing remains to be discussed: text rehabilitation. If you have experienced any of the symptoms listed before, you need to get help now. Call—DON’T TEXT—your doctor today to see what a wonderful new medicine approved FDA called Life can do for you. It is a mixture of essentials that are missing from your existence. Things such as hobbies, nature, sun, real friends, and family are all just a prescription away. But remember, the first step is to admit that you are addicted to the occurrence known as…texting.
Texts work to the advantage of people, but the harm they cause far outweighs the good. Many things are left out of a person’s life and many things become unachievable through texting. You can't hear a friend’s emotion; you can't enjoy a moment of silence because there was never any sound; you can't hear stuff in the background and ask what it is, thus learning more about that person’s life; and, most importantly, phone sex doesn’t work over text. You receive a text, read it, get aroused for about five seconds, then have to write something back. It’s an incredibly inefficient system…maybe one day they will fix it. The fact of the matter is that texting is an evil scourge upon the earth. Sadly, though, I am one that has been stained by its putrid grasp and, I must say, it doesn’t feel at all that bad.