An open letter to technology everywhere

Dear Technology,

I am beginning to despise you. And everyone else does, too.

Please don’t take it personally. It’s just you’re making us crazy. We really want to be friends — to get along and have picnics together. But you don’t make it easy. You’re always ringing and buzzing in our pockets. Crying out for attention.

Take your “email,” for example. Who are you fooling? The “e” doesn’t stand for “electronic.” It stands for “egad.” Because that’s the reaction I have whenever I realize there are 472 new messages in my inbox.
It’s only been 12 minutes since I deleted the last 472!

Do you know that makes me wet my pants.

I panic. I rush to my computer. I know something incredibly valuable awaits me. A message from the lottery about my millions … even though I don’t play the lottery. An invitation to join arctic explorers on a secret mission. A message from the president about an idea to solve world hunger using spare ketchup packets from fast food restaurants. Something good, right?

But there’s nothing but junk. Explain that to me?

Or this one: My house is “wireless,” right? So why does it have more wires than ever before? I had to have my phone lines upgraded for a new service that everyone in my area is being upgraded to. When the technician arrived he asked why he was there.

“Why? Because your company said we had to wait here between 9 and noon so you could come do something,” my wife told him.

“I see,” he replied. “Did they happen to mention what that was?”

Hey, technology: You can send me 857 channels to watch, but you can’t send a message to a technician telling him what he’s supposed to do?!?

I actually mailed a letter the other day. First time in months. It felt FANTASTIC! Granted, it took me an hour to remember how to do it, another 20 minutes to find an envelope, and I had to draw my own stamp since I didn’t have any. But aside from a nasty paper cut, it made me long for the good old days. You know, back when I used to take an entire week off work just to pay my bills. I loved it. I even savored licking the envelope. (Until I realized it was a self-sealing flap. My tongue is finally regaining feeling.)

But it was marvelously technology-free. So I’m looking for other tech-less experiences.

Don’t take it personally. It’s just you’re supposed to make our lives easier. To empower us. Yet, you only seem to be empowering yourself. More and more, you’re in control. Not us. You run our lives.

So I say no more. I’m reducing your power in my life. I’m taking back control. And I’m going to do it right now. Right after I figure out how to print this letter from my iPad and then order some stamps online.


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