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General Interest

DO THE SOCIAL DISCONNECT (NON)DANCE

Now that people are accustomed to communicating with one another almost exclusively via electronic devices, even within the same room, it makes some sort of perverted sense that Internet companies are now negotiating with Little League Baseball to install web cameras at these children’s games so their parents can watch the action on their computers.

Now all they have to do is come up with a computer to play catch with your kid and you’ll never have to see the little brat in person again, and our social disconnect will be complete.

Are we that friggin’ busy these days that we have no time at all for one another, not even our own children? Nobody’s even working anymore since the damned bankers stole all the money! What’s the excuse now?

“Daddy can’t make it to your game, son. I’ll be too busy talking to my 378 very close pals on Facebook, twittering my profound political insights 140 characters at a time to the Huff and Puff Post feedback blog, and then I’m scheduled to blow your college fund on e-Trade. But don’t worry, I’ll catch the game on Hulu in the middle of the night.”

You then set your computer to remind you to text your child an attagirl or a way to go, son! and go back to your devices.

And it’s not just Americans hooked on our Captain Kirk communication devices. The German government had to pass a law prohibiting potential employers from using job applicants’ Facebook pages to judge their characters, or lack of same. What ever happened to interviewing somebody?

One can only assume that the interviewers are also unaccustomed to meeting people in person, and so have no idea how be a judge of character except by peeking at their virtual footprints on various Internet websites, which technically, do not even exist. Look up the word “virtual” some time.

Can’t we face one another anymore? Can’t we size up another human being in the flesh? How many young people grow up hunched over some electronic piece of crap playing some piece of crap game or texting their clueless friends about every half-formed thought that pops into their flabby brains?

Many seldom speak, and when they do it is usually some inarticulate code that doesn’t make much sense, so you tune them out, they get frustrated and bend back over their little electronic pieces of crap with a vengeance and the evening’s conversation is over before it began.

The internet has brought us the greatest source of information ever compiled and the convenience of shopping at home for goods and services available across the planet or across the street. It has been a blessing and a curse rolled into one, sort of like television in the 1950’s, a huge what might have been.

Local stores and the friendly local people that work in them are disappearing and nobody knows anyone in their own neighborhood anymore. That’s not because people moved away, it’s because people are leaving their homes less and less and have no idea how to relate to other human beings. People are trickier and far more unpredictable than our electronic devices, and cannot be controlled or manipulated so easily.

No wonder there’s things like road rage, where people are caught in traffic that does respond to keyboard commands and cannot be shut down, and so they lose control of themselves and lash out violently at other people, people they don’t consider any more “real” than the animated apparitions in their piece of crap video games. Why not shoot or maim apparitions?

Worst of all, there’s no record stores left since the wonderful product they sold has been replaced by electronic digital downloads, not the same feeling as leaving a record store with your own copy of “Exile On Main Street.”

Who do young people talk to about new artists or exciting new musical trends? Do they even dance anymore on the odd occasions when they are physically in one another’s presence? They sure don’t speak much. How do they pair up in boyfriend/girlfriend pairs, according to which cell phone company they use?

Good thing these kids’ hormones are churning away or they’d never mingle with other human beings and the species would die out in a single generation. It’s ironic that all our electronic devices designed to bring us all together are driving us apart. We are raising a Disconnected Generation.

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