Extraordinary Stories

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Sunday, July 23, 2017

The "Are We Shortening Our Lives?" Story

It was an ordinary day.  Trying to figure out how to navigate around the information on my iPhone screen.  Just when I felt comfortable with my first smart phone, I handed it to a friend when I was driving and asked him to make a phone call for me.  He said, "You don't have the latest version on your phone.  You want me to update it for you?"  Should have never said "Yes" to him!  
Eventually, I can find most everything I need and if I can't, I hand it to one of my grandkids and they can find it for me.  Technology is wonderful and I'm all for it, but there are some negatives that do factor into the equation from time to time.  Such as when family visits and sits in the family room with Carol and me and look at their phones the entire time they are there.  Oh how I miss when rotary phones were the new technology.  I'd even welcome back the push-button phones.  Never going to happen I know.  I guess I shouldn't be wishing for times-gone-by or I would never have had the chance to write this blog on a daily basis.  But, the smartphone doesn't come without its problems.  Recently read that smartphones are causing problems in many marriages.  Seems many couples are married to their cellphones as well as to each other.  Sit in the family room watching TV together and have to text a message to each other rather than talk to them.  We live in a culture of texts, tweets, apps .... where the dings, beeps, buzzes .... dominate our lives.  On a recent visit with family in Maryland, we took our teenaged granddaughter out to eat and she actually placed her phone in the center of the table and didn't touch it once during our meal.  Of course, that was the deal if she wanted us to take her to eat.  Best conversation we had with her in quite a while.   Two years ago a survey was taken, asking if screen time was a problem in their marriage.  At that time only 20% reported that it did.  Wonder what the % may be two years later.  Another study found that more and more kid's posture is starting to suffer from always looking down at their cellphone.  
The ailment has been labeled "text neck" and can only be explained by the strain on the body caused by constant viewing of hand-held electronic devices.  Spine specialists are also seeing strain on youth's spines from cellphone, laptop and tablet use.  An entire physical program has been developed to help those who have ailments related to phone use.  Youth and adults are so engrossed with their phones today that they are carrying more weight on their frames and getting less physical activity.  Will this eventually lead to shorter life spans?  Betcha it will!!  As for me, I'm sitting in my recliner typing this story on my MacBook Air while my wife is sitting next to me in her recliner looking at Facebook on her iPad.  Are we any different than everyone else?  Maybe not, but when the charge goes on my laptop and on her iPad, they are finished for the day.  Might be a good idea for everyone!  It was another extraordinary day in the life of an ordinary guy.

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