Where is the sociability? As I sit here looking out the vast window of my local java joint, I’m feeling like a social animal. I look around and it occurs to me that all of us here found our way to our local coffee house to meet up with a little bit of humanity rather than burrow in our homes steeped in blissful isolation.
So what’s wrong with this picture: I’m surrounded by at least twenty peeps, my peers, all of whom are deeply involved with their lap tops or iPods and no one is interacting with anyone…for hours?
For the love of God, why doesn’t anyone look up from their computer, throw a smile across the room and give a nod, a little chatter? How are the kids? What’s going on with your crazy boss? How was the movie? Did your wife leave you? Are you lonely?
I remember a time when I would take a walk to my local coffee house and strike up interesting conversations with the people there. Friendships were made and stimulating discussions were had. It was a wonderful touch of humanity.
Today I notice that we all look so average, so normal … so social. But as I sit here in the mecca of sociability, I’m getting the creepy feeling that we are all far from it.
Technology has connected the world in the past 30 years. I can reach out globally with this blog without leaving my chair. But has it brought us closer or further apart as people?
I’ve noticed lately that when I meet up with friends, they often end up talking with each other via their phones; playing games, sending messages, even though we are all in the same room just inches apart. There is something a little disconcerting about that.
Kids aren’t out playing ball, riding bikes, climbing trees or setting up lemonade stands. They are in front of their video games and interacting with peeps they don’t even know on their Facebook and Twitter pages.
How much intimacy have we lost with each other because we are spending so much time connecting to the world?
As I sit here, I see some people staring off into space with a tinge of sadness on their face. Some entrenched in their work, some looking lonely and a bit lost and others engrossed in loud phone conversations. It comes to mind that we are far from being social with one another, yet this place is filled with people making the effort. It’s all a bit confusing to me.
For a brief moment, our progress in technology seems more like a setback.
Maybe next time I’ll just stay home with the cat.