Thanks to mobile phones - you are always connected! The world is a small place now! There is always music in the air - its either a shrill ring tone or an item song playing on someone's mobile loudspeaker. There is always a festive atmosphere - of people greeting their friends on mobile phones and exchanging loud greetings. A young lady sitting next to me was even koochie-kooing on the phone and wasn't aware to keep her voice down. The bus driver was on the phone most of the time while right above him lay a note requesting passengers not to disturb the driver while he was driving.
The other day a stranger suddenly greeted me in the lift and I returned the courtesy by smiling back at him. I was in for an embarassment when he completely ignored my smile only to realize he was using a wireless headset and was actually on a call. Quite strangely, the same guy managed to embarass me again in the gent's toilet a week later.
Leaves me wondering.. what exactly are the boons that mobile phones bring to us? They say its a device built for the emergency situations, but I have been carrying a cell for a decade now and didn't face any emergency so far where my mobile has greatly helped. Well! Not sure if people call ordering pizza as an emergency these days.
Now quite ironically, mobile networks are always jammed during the occasional mishaps like heavy rains, terrorist attacks, etc.
Reminds me of an anecdote I heard in childhood...
A village had been troubled by snakes. Though it was not in big numbers, the villagers still wanted to get rid of the snakes so they can have peace of mind. They hit upon a bright idea and brought in the best eagles from the city. The eagles feasted on the snakes and in no time all the snakes were gone. But ironical as it was, a new disaster dawned upon the village. The crops and godowns were all destroyed by marauding rodents. The snakes which kept the rodents under check were gone and the village was now crawling with rats. The short-sighted approach of the villagers had upset the balance of life and they were left wishing that good old snake days come back to them. They were last seen chasing away the eagles and buying snakes from neighboring villages.
Have mobile phones mushroomed into our society in a similar way? We needed a technology that helped us keep in touch, seek help during emergency and help track each other in times of need - mobiles are the perfect answer to it, but with every new technology comes a cartload of ethics and morality regarding its use and abuse. Did we, in the omnipresent greed of commerce and profit, burgeon this tool so much that it went beyond our normal requirements? Is this one of those cases of invention mothering necessity?
Picture this - try holding the door to someone on the phone and he/she will pass without even an acknowledgement. For the person on the phone, maybe you (and others around) just dont exist.