Stalked by Technology

FacebookTwitter… This blog…

They are all a means to promote social voyeurism and encourage some form of narcissism. Everybody look at me, I’m going to the bathroom! YAY ME! Woohoo! Can you HEAR me? Actually, it would be more accurate to ask if anyone READ me, but I digress.

I’m sick today!

I did my LAUNDRY!

Look how many friends I have!

Wow, this truly is fascinating stuff! But, as fascinating as it might be to some, I’m certain that my Facebook/Twitter friends and followers prefer to read updates that are a little less mainstream – like… ‘I’m going to do some naked mud wrestling tonight!

Sure, I’ve been guilty of posting mundane updates, for no other reason other then the fact that I was bored at the time, but, for the most part it’s never really been about getting attention. In fact, a friend once asked me why I bothered posting Facebook updates if I didn’t want people commenting on them to begin with. I mean after all, Facebook IS a social network isn’t it? Isn’t the inherent purpose of Facebook to interact with other people? Friends and strangers alike? At the time, I complained about the uselessness of some of the things that I read on walls and in news feeds. You know those people who just can’t control their urge to comment on absolutely every single post, even those that warrant no response? The ones who clutter your wall just so they can get the last word in? And those who start conversations on your wall, that you’re not even a part of? So annoying. My biggest complaint  relative to such comments leads me to believe that perhaps I’m not meant to socialize using this interweb technique. Perhaps I should stick to the old-fashioned way of communicating – the one where face-to-face meetings were the norm and the internet was just a way to send emails or to look at porn. As it stands now, I admit that I use Facebook to promote my blog and to raise funds for my upcoming breast cancer run. Sometimes I post an update but I inadvertently find myself asking why I bother, and promptly delete it. In any case, those same people that I mentioned above don’t feel the need to comment when asked for important things like sponsorship or donations, even though it’s for a good cause. Go figure.  Anyway, while I agree that Facebook is a great way to stay connected and to do some networking, I have to ask myself if it’s the best way to truly connect. What do you think? Has technology made us lose that loving feeling?

This brings me to my next point:

Mobile devices, Oh how I loathe thee! I have a cell phone that I never use, and I am constantly scolded for being unreachable. Why? Because I never answer it. Besides putting my phone on vibrate so I don’t hear it, and screening my calls, I often forget that I own a cell phone, which results in a dead battery. Oops.

As luck would have it, in January of 2009, I was informed that the former president of my division had put in a request for me. I held my breath as my boss gave me the news: I was going to be the not-so-proud owner of… a BlackBerry.  CRAP. Boy did I try to get out of it – I don’t think anyone has ever fought so hard to avoid getting a free phone. For three months, I successfully dodged the BlackBerry bullet. My former boss wasn’t really pushing it on me, but alas, she wasn’t making the decision. I kept telling her I wouldn’t use it, and she kept telling me that was fine, but I was still getting it. Then one day, I got the dreaded call from IT:

“Hi Ann…”

“I don’t want it dude!”

“OK. But I just finished configuring your new BlackBerry…”

“I told you I don’t want it.”

“But it’s brand new! And you have to take it.”

“I’m not using it – give it to someone else. I’m sure there are plenty of gadget freaks out there who will take it!”

I still got it. Oh well.

My point in all of this is the following: When did it become a necessity to be connected at ALL times? When did we decide that it was OK to be reachable during every waking (and sometimes sleeping) hour? Personally, I prefer emailing my friends to messaging them on Facebook. I prefer meeting up in person over impersonal conversations via BBM. I want my friends to tell me when something big happens in their lives – not discover it in my news feed a week later. I want to enjoy a dinner out with friends, without having to see a row of iPhones and BlackBerrys sitting face up on the table, and everyone frantically checking these so that they don’t miss a call, a text or an IM. Get over it!

Sure, technology is great and offers a lot of benefits and opportunities to connect (were it not for the Internet, I would have no blog!), but sometimes we need to pull the plug and reboot ourselves. No?

What do you guys think? Can you go a day without your Smartphone?


Off the Top of My Head

This is about as random as it gets. For this week anyway.

Fridays seem to bring an influx of absolutely no inspiration, so perhaps I should swap Wordless Wednesday for Wordless Friday. The only problem is that I might have something to say on a Friday or on a Wednesday. This past week I had to forgo Wordless Wednesday, because as it turned out, I had plenty to say. In light of this (i.e. the pointless airing of my thoughts about which day should be wordless), I’m going to rename Wordless Wednesday to Wordless. Problem solved. Now I won’t be confined to being wordless on Wednesdays or Fridays.

Last night I treated myself to a long overdue pedicure. As luck would have it, the spa charged me twice and I only realized it this morning when looking at my online banking details. I called them at 9 a.m. and am still waiting for the manager to call me back. One way or another, these people are giving me my money. The pedicure was good but it wasn’t that good. I did appreciate the free wine and chocolate-covered strawberries though. Of course, if you consider the fact that I’ve paid for the service twice, it’s not so free.

Out of nowhere, my hip has been causing me some problems. Last night, I could barely walk, it hurt that much. I’m noticing an interesting trend here – when I have ‘lazy’ weeks and don’t work out, I somehow manage to injure myself doing…. well, nothing. This is not the first time this has happened to me. And of course, the injury always seems to be sustained the day before I plan to get back to it, which then leads me to feel stressed out about the fact that I can’t work out because you know, I’ve got to make up for one week’s worth of laziness. I’m sure there is some kind of strange karma involved here.

Martha Stewart really irritates me. She strikes me as being full of sh*t. I sense no sincerity from that woman.

People who always feel the need to talk about themselves without ever asking you how you are, or showing interest in what you’re doing, annoy me. Everyone is self-involved at one time or another, but there needs to be a mutual level of self-involvement, no? Also, people who never initiate anything. But perhaps that can be interpreted as “I don’t want to see you/hang out with you/talk to you.” Whatever. Seems like friendships these days are often a one-way street or friendships of convenience.

I’ve come to the conclusion that Facebook is quite possibly a socially acceptable form of voyeurism, which, coincidentally, feeds many peoples’ narcissistic side.

The perv next door is still living with his mother, and he’s been here since the end of May. When the hell is he going to leave already? Wasn’t being yelled at by the neighbor and being told this wasn’t his home clear enough? His latest activity involves sitting on the balcony in the dark, and saying ‘hello’, consequently scaring the shit out of me because I’d never notice he was there otherwise. I don’t know, but if I was in my 40s and living with my mother, and all I did was ride shirtless on my bicycle, I think my ego would take a hit.  Not to mention that I would go stir-crazy. I wonder if coughing is still his mating call.

Aren’t soap opera people supposed to be hot? If so, why is it that there are unattractive people on daytime television? I’m just wondering. Seems like they fall into one of two categories: too good-looking and perfect or ugly. I wonder how an actor feels when they are specifically hired to play the role of someone who is overweight. On one hand, it’s great that they are hired (‘they’ meaning actors in general) – I hear it’s tough to make it in the acting world.  And on the other well, I suppose it really comes down to how you feel about yourself. People can be beautiful regardless of shape or size. This reminds me of Hugo. Everybody loves Hugo.

I thank God every day for the creation of ear plugs. Those bright pink ones that look like they should glow in the dark.

And lastly, I have no idea what half the stuff on this blog does; what the hell are Trackbacks and Pingbacks? And what am I supposed to link them to? Live and learn I guess. I suppose I should be proud that I successfully got my widgets sorted out and linked my Twitter account to my blog all on my own. Amazing!

And this concludes my random thoughts for today. I’m going to hope that the hip is all good tomorrow so I can get to the gym and also do some hot yoga. That would be fabulous.

Have a great weekend!