July 30, 2009

Wise Words

"Life moves pretty fast; if you don't stop and look around once in awhile, you could miss it." -Ferris Bueller

My sister, brother and I conducted a sociological experiment the other day to provide insight into the human mind. It was performed accurately, tastefully, and maturely. The procedures were as follows:

1. Procure an automobile. The more room the better.

2. Drive said automobile all over town.

3. Turn up the music. Black-Eyed Peas are preferred but whatever floats your boat works, too.

4. Stick your tongue out at people driving by and observe.

Ok, so maybe it doesn't follow the scientific procedure perfectly. Maybe we just felt silly after playing with our Tia's 3-year-old daughter. Maybe we really, really, really like "Boom Boom Pow." Maybe we just felt safe behind our tinted windows.

Whatever. We still had fun livin' on the edge. And we made some interesting conclusions. First of all, we "performed" this "experiment" a good 30 minutes before a single soul turned our way. I understand drivers should focus on the driving task ahead of them and blahblahblah, but even passengers failed to notice our ridiculous dancing and facial expressions.

And another thing: nearly every single person we passed (except perhaps the young children) was on a phone. We saw communication via cell phone in every form - talking, texting, tweeting, Facebooking, blogging, surfing. You name it, we saw it. It's truly amazing how reliant we have all become on instant communication in my lifetime. We are constantly connected to anyone or anything at any given moment.

Don't get me wrong - I'm totally guilty of wasting hours of my day on Facebook and even checking my email in the middle of class. I just thought it was fascinating to see how technology has transformed our lives. So much has changed in the past 20 years and our daily lives have adapted with it. The cell phones you see in movies circa 1986 seem so silly compared to their sleek, modern counterparts. And since the arrival of unlimited text messaging, most of us prefer to text rather than talk on the phone anyways.

Personally, I don't think these changes are such a bad thing. Advances in technology have made so many great things possible. Google is quite possibly the best thing since sliced bread and I know plenty of people who graduated from I.B. thanks in large part to Wikipedia. But sometimes it's nice to disconnect from the humming of our computers and phantom vibrations of our cell phones, kind of like Ferris Bueller said 23 years ago.

That Ferris was a pretty smart kid, even if his cell phone was the size of a small human.

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