Skip to content

My view out the cabin window… communicating – personal contact or text?

April 20, 2015


nun-with-rulerThe only sound heard in the classroom was the lingering crack of the ruler as it hit my knuckles. My teacher continued to stand over me, arms folded across her chest with the ruler poised to to strike again. For me just another day in our fifth grade penmanship class. An entire year of making ovals, jagged lines and letters to match those printed at the top of the page with any intentional deviations dealt with swiftly and at times painfully.

Sitting here almost 60 years later I wonder what are schools are now doing to teach our children how to write legibly. I am hearing more and more that computers are being introduced in schools to our children even in the first grade, and I wonder if learning to write legibly is even emphasized anymore. I mean when was the last time we had our children or grandchildren write a letter to their grandparents? For that matter when was the last time ( you ) wrote a letter?

Communications in the year 2015 is now all about email or texting, with even the casual phone call now being supplanted with the, more impersonal, text message. I think our current methods of staying in contact with friends has suffered with the loss of that personal contact. We are being forced more and more to hurry our encounters and thus never truly developing any close personal bond.

Yes I am an old curmudgeon that longs for the days of the ‘Bakelite’ eight pound house phone and the millions of pay phones scattered throughout our daily lives. I believe this is because back then because we invested more time in making that phone call but we had more empathy for people when we did speak with. Today we do not have to wait to find a pay phone to call someone, so today more often than not treat phone calls as distractions from something we consider more important.

Investing the time and effort of finding and using pay phones
and that old home phone land line made our conversations seem more important.
Today that text and cell phone, for the most part, make any call just another distraction,
and consider this…we never heard about a pay phone killing anyone like today
when drivers read or write text messages while driving.

7 Comments leave one →
  1. April 20, 2015 7:49 pm

    last fall was at the dock for ferry in
    Valdez and there was a pay phone but it only took credit cards …..thought to self huh?
    and it could not be used with out card…


  2. April 20, 2015 9:37 pm

    Sigh… Alaska is on my bucket list. I had better become a famous travel writer/photographer soon!


  3. Dwight permalink
    April 21, 2015 1:16 am

    Alas, these days most of the phone calls I receive are from telemarketers. Thinking about discontinuing my land line and just using e-mail.


  4. April 21, 2015 7:13 am

    I used to have great handwriting but with the advent of word processors my writing skills have seriously decayed. And while I still write letters all are done via Word. I, too, miss the days of more personal contact but I also must extol the benefits of email as after moving up here I’d have lost touch with so many folks were it not for that medium. Typical ‘double edged sword’… Just six and a half days until this darn cast comes off; then I can look forward to weeks of PT.


  5. April 21, 2015 6:11 pm

    Absolutely stunning view you have! As for texting I get frustrated with it as well. I miss having a phone that works, a TV that doesn’t cost so much a month and I really don’t like feeling line I’m going through withdrawals when there’s an internet outage! I wonder..,,some day will we not even need to type? Maybe we will develop telepathic skills.


  6. Del permalink
    April 22, 2015 10:47 am

    Boy I remember those days well. 12 years of catholic school. Nuns and brothers. Very few lay teachers. But wow at least I learned from them. And thanked my parents for paying. Public schools were a nightmare from what I heard from friends too. And yes I’m using my smarty phone typing this. Lol. Also received a hand written letter from one of my Dads long time friends after he passed. 8 pages too. Its been along time since I received one like that. Take it easy and see you sometime in June.


  7. Jon permalink
    April 24, 2015 6:42 pm

    Del,you were fortunate that your parents sent you to private school. One thing about computers is I’ve re-discovered my typing skills & have honed them (if my fingers stay warm, lol!)


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: