What we want is to see the child in pursuit of knowledge, and not knowledge in pursuit of the child. ~George Bernard Shaw
Let's sit and chat
So this past weekend, we were in the city running some errands and I popped into a local coffee shop to pick up some coffee and hot chocolates for my traveling circus. As I stood there amongst the oh so trendy and chic city folk, I realized something very strange.... no one was actually talking to each other. A family of four sat at the table closest to me. The Mom and Dad on their cell phones and each child playing a game on a device of one sort or another. At another table, five college students sat with their identical Apple laptops butted up together gazing a screens occasionally reaching for the nearest beverage. Everyone in line was on their phone, and everyone sitting down was lost in one sort of screen or another. Not a single conversation was happening in the entire place.
Ok, now I know that I am not the norm. Our kids are media free, we don’t have TV at home, and while both hubby and I work on the computer (especially seeing as he is a software developer), when we go for lunch or coffee, we do not bring these things with us. We actually sit and ...*gasp* talk! I know that many people out there sit and talk as well. I know what I saw was an extreme but it is not that uncommon.
When our local coffee shop was open (RIP Cafe Molo) they refused to put WiFi in. People grumbled, people complained, but you know what? It worked. People came and sat down and chatted. Chatted with the person at the table with them, chatted with the person at the table next to them, chatted with the people standing in line. It was lovely. It was friendly. It was exactly how a coffee shop should be. All of our technology has brought the world within reach for everyone everywhere, but what happens when it makes us out of touch with those around us?
This isn’t meant to be a rant, it really isn’t. I know we are extreme and I know that many people do not agree with me and my beliefs and that is fine. I believe we can all live our lives in a manner that feels best to us as long as we pose no danger to anyone else. I am sure many think I am being judgemental, and maybe I am, but I am not trying to be, these are just observations I am making. I am not calling for a ban on electronic devices in coffee shops either, I just think we have gone a bit crazy with it all. When we have gotten to a point when we can’t even sit down and chat with a friend over coffee, something is wrong.
So if you are ever in a coffee shop near me, and you see a lone soul without a computer open or a phone out, please pull up a chair, I’d love to sit and chat!