Saturday, November 16, 2013


By Keith N Fisher

Oh, technology, used by humans . . .

He was lucky his phone didn’t end up in the toilet, but I’m ahead of myself.

When I arrived for work the other day, I was told a customer left their phone, and it was in the lost and found basket. I made a mental note and went to work. After a while, I heard a ring tone and wondered where the source was.

That’s when I remembered the lost phone and pulled it out, hoping to answer the call and tell the person where the phone was. It was a smart phone, with a portable charger attached, and I tried to figure out how to answer. It was locked.

Now, I can understand the need to lock your phone, and the need to call the number of your lost phone, but the situation was hopeless. I consider myself techno-savy. Given enough time, I can usually figure out most anything. I really wanted to help, but I just don’t have time in my busy workday, to chase down the owner of a lost phone. I couldn’t answer the call, so I set it aside.

Later, still, I noticed a car in the parking lot, but the occupants didn’t come into the store. I kept working and the car remained. During the middle of a task, I heard the short whoop of a police car siren. You know the short blast a cop uses to let you know he’s trying to pull you over. I wondered what the police were doing?

Then, just like the cops do, the siren went off in three bursts. I figured the cops were in the parking lot, playing with their siren. By the time I figured out the noise was coming from the phone, it had grown loud and annoying. I pulled the plug on the charger. Then I tried again, to unlock the phone. I was looking into ways of removing the battery, when a guy walked into the store.

He said something that I didn’t understand, but something told me he was the owner of the phone. "Is this your phone?" I asked. He nodded, and I shoved the whole thing, charger and all, with two hands, at him. He left, and I noticed the car left with him.

In my rant, during the next few minutes, I lamented how rude he was. If he was sitting outside, why couldn’t he just walk in and ask if he’d left his phone? In my workplace, I cannot control the music that plays. It’s never something I would choose and it’s always too loud. When that siren went off, I had visions of having to deal all night, with that too.

He’s lucky I didn’t shove his smart phone in the toilet to make it stop. Still, the whole experience made me reflect on technology, and how it has wormed it’s way into our society. I’m typing this on a computer, while sitting in my car, waiting to take my daughter home from school. She’ll likely text me in a few minutes to see if I’m here.

I’m going to post this on the blog and set it to appear on Saturday morning, all by itself. I’m getting ready to submit two manuscripts via email. This afternoon, I’m going to do a video interview for a job I applied for over the Internet. Yes, technology is prevalent in my life, but as a writer, it’s a wonderful tool.

When did walking into a store to ask about your lost article, become so adverse? As a kid, when I lost something, I’d retrace my steps, asking everyone if they had seen the missing item. It’s the way it was. Then, again, we didn’t have color television either. People actually interacted with each other. Manuscripts were written by hand or typed onto paper.

I wonder. Are we better off with all our technology?

Good luck with your writing—see you next week.

1 comment:

Weston Elliott said...

Emily Post needs to write a new book on etiquette. Oh, wait - she died. Well, hey, we're all writers around here, maybe we should work on that together!