Mobile messaging. That’s the new thing I’m told. All the kiddies like to text. They are over email. They use Facebook but not what you want them to use it for, and are not that into Twitter. Now I am supposed to text people. A really nice man told me this the other day. It took all of my strength to not slide off my chair and throw a temper tantrum on the carpet.

Instead I smiled, accepted the fancy paperwork detailing what the research shows, and waited for him to leave before banging my head against my desk. I work in communications, but I am getting tired of all the different ways we are supposed to communicate with people. Am I allowed to say that?

Facebook. Twitter. LinkedIn. Blogger. Vimeo. Other shit I don’t use but am told I should. I feel like I am stalking a boy who doesn’t really like me. Hiding in the bushes behind his house. Calling his home, work, and gym. Analyzing the geotags of his Instagrams and showing up in the neighborhood in the off chance I might run into him ordering a latte. Jesus. It’s exhausting. Now I am supposed text him?

I am starting to feel a little desperate. And like it’s all a lot of noise. I am told it is not. That people tailor their information feeds to only what they want to receive. That these are opt-in services. Yeah, for how long? I spent two hours yesterday unsubscribing to email listservs I never signed up for—I just happened to buy a pair of shoes at their store online or donated to save the whales one day. It doesn’t mean I want to buy a matching handbag or save orphaned salmon too.

I guess I just miss the old way of communicating. You know, fifth grader style. When boys passed you notes in wobbly handwriting asking you to go out with them. You circled yes and sent it back across the aisle because it didn’t really change anything because you never actually went anywhere with each other anyway. I guess it’s the equivalent of a like on a Facebook these days.

I realize I don’t really want to communicate like I did in elementary school. It would just be me literally chasing boys around the playground and pretending to be mad when they pulled my hair. I would like to think I have grown. Somewhat. I just don’t think communicating with audiences who supposedly want to hear from you should be that hard.

Maybe I am wrong. And I admit, that is entirely possible. (Unlikely though.) You see I work at a non-profit. People supposedly come here because they want to be here. Why the need to hunt them down on nine different platforms to tell them the same thing? Don’t their alerts just get filtered to one junk yahoo account anyway?

Perhaps I am just acting out to change. But I feel like my phone is my last private place. I am on the national no-call list. I haven’t received a phone call or text from someone other than friends, family, my bank or my dentist in years. Is nothing sacred anymore? Must we share everything with everyone in our networks?

I write this on a public blog. One of my three. I have Facebook and Twitter accounts. I realize how ridiculous I sound. But then again many folks do. And don’t people grow a little weary of listening to everyone they supposedly wanted to listen to post things they should read, attend, or buy? I know I do. Between all the shouts for attention, are we really listening to what anyone is saying anymore? Or are we just waiting for our chance to respond?

4 thoughts on “#overit

  1. As ever, you are my favorite writer. Too bad the blog isn’t in cursive too! But that has gone out of public schools (at least out in MA) just as everyone is transitioning to all these other means of communicating. My place of work is a non profit as well but they have an entire department of social networking now to teach all the employees how to use twitter, Facebook, email, texting etc in an institution-friendly/promoting manner. Non-profit doesn’t mean they don’t want to make money, it just changes the tax codes and means they get to plow the “profits” back into the company. But I too, long for the days when conversation and written exchange were stock and trade of getting by in society. If people really had to tell people in person the drivel they are pushing out over Facebook and twitter they would just shut up, and the world would be better for it. Love, the dinosaur.

  2. Is it bad that I look out at the mountains and think, I should build there in the shadows. Maybe there’s no reception there? Love you too Dinosaur. I will teach the nephews to write in cursive since the teachers won’t. Proper love letters are always written by hand.

  3. Adorable. I admit I am a terribly frequent texter (to friends) because it is easy, one way and fast, and I don’t have a smart-phone (must escape technology sometimes!). But what I like the least is when people call me trying to sell me something but they don’t admit until 10 minutes into a call that they are actually trying to sell me something. I think all the resources out there help me make informed decisions but they definitely clutter our minds too. I love all your examples from childhood 🙂 I think you are an excellent communicator. Who knew that ex-communicating strangers would be such a time-consuming de-cluttering necessity though!?

  4. Seriously. I get so much spam from companies I bought stuff from wanting me to hurry back and buy more. I want to call them up, say, hello. You sound desperate. Just keep making quality products and I will come back. My silence is not me playing hard to get. I just don’t want to buy anything right now. But I know they would just dump more junk mail in my inbox because they would think my contact was proof their efforts are working. Sigh.

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