Texting is Toxic


Trout Republic

Most of my readers can recall a time before cell phones were invented and we all longed for a mobile phone like Maxwell Smart had in his shoe in the sitcom Get Smart.
In that show, he was a spy of sorts who along with his pretty (and smarter) assistant caught criminals amid zany antics. The one thing he did have that we all wanted was a shoe phone.
The magazines Popular Mechanics and Popular Science long proliferated those ideas to us as they advertise a George Jetson type of future for us and we faunched at the bit for that kind of technology.
Other television shows like Star Trek, Buck Rogers, and the old Orson Welles stories served to whet our appetite for the day we too could carry such devices on our person and call whomever we please when we pleased.
Ol’ Dutch was one of the first to get a pager and that freed me from having to baby-sit the phone when on 24-hour on call. Suddenly I could go to church, out to dinner or mow the grass without worrying about missing a call and losing my job. It was not too long after that when the first mobile phones came out and carrying a huge battery pack around had you looking like you had made a trip to Browns Shoe Store.
But technology caught up with us and we soon had a flip phone like Captain Kirk and could call almost with abandon albeit with limited minutes or excessive costs for those minutes. Not a few people learned the hard just how much those minutes cost.
Texting came along sometime in there and it was difficult at best as each key had three or more letters assigned to it and that made it hard to navigate and besides, who would want to text when you could talk. So much easier.
Fast forward to today and even Ol’ Dutch has become a wizard of texting and unlimited messaging and data have addicted me to that confounded device in the worst sort of way. Along with that came auto correction of words typed and suddenly the tiny chip decided that it knew best what you wanted to say and started inserting all sorts of wrong words in the most inappropriate places and times.
Thanks to autocorrect, people have sent texts that says they are looking forward to “sleeping” with a job interviewer instead of “speaking.” Or “I am stuck on the toilet and will be late to work” when the texter meant to say stuck on the “tollway.” Another classic was someone texting “how does sex sound for tomorrow?” When they meant to say “six.” Awkward at the very least.
Ol’ Dutch is not immune to these and other faux pas and just the other day pocket poked some keys and was recording a live video which was including bathroom time. Miss Trixie burst in on me screaming some unintelligible words about fart sounds or other and finally I was able to shut that all down.
Trixie’s uncle texted me the other day about finding someone’s final ashes in a storage locker and that they were in a “urinal.” I think he meant “urn” but who knows as maybe the deceased really was just going down the toilet in their last days. Or Uncle Mel just typed “urinal” as a mistake or is laughing all the way to the local morgue to deposit said ashes.
We all are guilty of the mistakes texting as none of us actually read what we text before we send it and that causes a lot of misunderstandings and hurt feelings at the least.
I used to work in an office situation and we always tried to sit on emails for a day or two before sending them to prevent any kind of typos or misquoted things which seemed to help. So for my new year’s resolutions I think I will start reviewing each text before I send it. Well, then again, maybe not.

Kevin Kirkpatrick and his Yorkie, Cooper, fish, hunt, ATV or hike daily. His email is [email protected] Additional news can be found at www.troutrepublic.com or on Twitter at TroutRepublic.

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