In between spoonful of scrambled eggs and lines of a post I was reading online, I was also having a short conversation with my friends. Eating together has always been our favorite bonding time at home. I am sharing a two-bedroom apartment with five close friends. Busy schedules are keeping as apart during working days .
This morning is one of the once or twice in a week opportunities for us to talk over a sumptuous meal. Then, I stumbled upon “The Forgotten Art of Simple Conversation” and it reminded me of one of the things I’ve been thinking about lately…
While the world has become flat because of communications technology, people are creating walls in between. While the World Wide Web connects east and west, people are moving away from each other like north and south. As Alanis Morissette puts it “isn’t it ironic?”
I took a second look on what just happened this morning.
How beautiful it would have been if we were talking about what had just happened to us last week; about stuff we would have loved to share or to ask second opinion about; about our latest ventures we need advice with. These would have made a delicious and nourishing conversation of people who cares for each other. I’m afraid we too are taking for granted this very beautiful work of art.
I am thankful for technology because it makes long distance communication less hassle and less costly. I am thankful that I get inspired by the blogs I read and for the encouraging lines on my friends’ Facebook status. But the rise of technology is slowly killing personal relationship. Instead of serving its purpose to build bridges across continents, it’s creating a gap between friends and family members who are physically together.
We prefer to “tweet” or “status” about what we feel instead of talking about it with a friend. It’s good that we have an outlet for our bottled-up emotions but the outlet doesn’t really help us come up with resolution unless of course you can call the attention of someone who really cares and this someone will find a way to reach out. Unconsciously we begin to build a wall around us and we are becoming like an island, isolated and detached.
My younger brother, whom I didn’t see for almost two years, visited last week. I suggested we watch a movie together, something we haven’t done before and something he rarely does. He didn’t like the idea. He preferred to walk around the city and talk. For him, watching a movie is fun but it can waste the time that we can spend catching up. And I just noticed, looking back, that he did not check his phone at all while we are talking over dinner. I did. We even forgot to immortalize the moment through a snapshot. It was too short a time to catch up but we had a quality time because we went personal and not “digital”.
I feel blessed for the times my roommates and I have simple conversations before bedtime. For the thoughts we share over a cup of coffee the following morning. It feels good to be around people.
Do you find it insensitive when your friend prefers to look at his tablet instead of looking at you when you talk? If you do, you still have it, pass it on.