Remember those 90s romantic comedies where the young girl-next-door was engaged to that high-powered business guy who was always checking his pager and abandoning her at lunch to rush off to an important meeting with the Japanese? How can she be marrying that jerk-off?
Well, everyone glued to their smartphone today is That Guy, except now That Guy is checking out his ex’s ex’s dog’s misspelled tattoo on Facebook instead of investing in exciting new Japanese toilet technology.
Sure, smartphones are useful: checking your work email, looking up directions, texting your friend that you’re running late. It’s even a phone. But we’re way past the casual convenience of verifying a birthday on Facebook or Skyping someone your dong. We already have cells practically glued to our hands. Soon they’ll be in our futuristic glasses and down our pants measuring and recommending what products we should buy.
Addiction to your phone is degrading your mind and inhibiting you from developing in several key areas. Here are 8 ways your smartphone is making you stupid.
8. Distracting in Class or at Work
Oh, crap, what did Mr. Jenkins just say? It probably wasn’t important. Hey, cool, Danny posted a funny venn diagram about different types of wives. Ha, ha, so true. Share.
Rather than listen to a nuanced lecture specifically designed to help you learn in person, or whittle away at that pile of work on your desk, the smartphone offers many titillating response videos and comments sections that demand your attention. Your discreet, phone-sized attention.
7. Not Unplugging from Work
Just as play blends perfectly into work, having your company cell with you on your commute home, in your hand at the dinner table, and on the couch while you’re trying to watch America’s Stupidest Stupids, allows you to stay up-to-date with those emails.
We all need to unwind from work and spend some quality time with family or even alone. Stress is a killer; look it up. Okay, don’t look it up. Hey, your wife is standing in the doorway and would like to show you she finally found sharkleberry edible underpants and she’s donning them right now!
6. Bastardizing the language
Texting may be the worst threat to proper grammar and spelling since chat rooms. You couldn’t tell if NoScrubs69 was twelve or just stupid, and now no one bothers to take the time to thumb in full sentences or even entire words. And it’s spilling over into non-phone realms as well. I know; I’ve graded high school English papers.
The word “text” itself is shortened to “txt”. You’re saving time on the “e” there, really? (Pro tip: save time on scoring E by buying it in bulk.) Whenever a friend’s message tells me it has been ‘sent from my iPhone’, I worry they might have had a stroke.
Why worry so much about spelling as long as you can understand the message? Yeah, that’s what CallBlizzy15 had to say about it too. But he also said “dat Nom Chompky dude isa fag..” So, take his insights with a grain of salt.
5. Acting like a Total A-hole
Is acting like a jerk the same as being “stupid”? I don’t know, is walking into a fire hydrant stupid? Is crashing into the back of your friend stupid? Is veering back and forth on the sidewalk blocking all possible ways to get past you and getting punched in the face by me stupid?
People are bad enough drivers without staring down at their junk while they make a right on a red light. Don’t you see me punching your car?
4. Ruining Your Planning and Foresight
Smartphones are modern PDAs and keeping a calendar, alerts, and other organizational info with you can feel life saving. But if you’re constantly using your phone to do things the moment you feel like doing them, then there is no need to think ahead or plan anything.
You’ll look up directions on the way to see that dude even though you don’t know if he’s available. And you’ll just look up your opinion on whether the U.S. using torture is justified on the internet later.
3. Social Ignorance
I’ve witnessed tables of people in restaurants where everyone is staring at their screens, furiously thumbing. People gawk at their glowing rectangles in dark movie theatres. Pedestrians slowly swerve down the sidewalk, avoiding looking at anyone’s face. People are losing the ability to be present and participate in social situations.
But, you can avoid the ‘Got 50 Cents?’ Lady, charity canvassers who just wanna have a conversation for a minute, and smiling at that young mom and her kids who are squealing with glee at a puppy. Gross.
2. Degrading your Memory and Brain Capacity
In fact, you don’t need to remember any of that old-fashioned brain stuff like phone numbers, birthdays, spelling, basic math, sex positions. And what’s wrong with that? The smartphone is just another learning tool. Last year on Twitter, rap star and sociology enthusiast, Kanye West, ranted that kids should constantly use their phones in class.
Instead of recalling the French word for smug, performing basic algebra, or remembering facts, they can just look it up! Now, I ain’t sayin’ he’s an idiot, but he ain’t messin’ with no books, books. (Radio edit: I’m white.)
1. Addiction to a Disposable Plastic Slab
A lot of people buy the newest version of the iPhone every time one is released. You have to. It’s 0.0028372 inches thinner. And it’s such an amazing piece of technology with its sleek design, and the best hardware, software, and apps around. The best.
Which is why you have to throw it out every eight months. Suicidal Chinese labourers and Congolese rape batteries aside, we’re running out of that oil stuff that is used to make plastic goods like medical equipment and maybe plastic services depending on our progress with sex robots.
That might cause a bit of a rift in day-to-day life. Good luck explaining to your kids that they’re learning survival skills at three because everyone needed the newest phone to check on texts from Chance. You should never have given him them digits, girl.
But, you keep your older versions around in your closet. You don’t just throw them away. Just because something is in your house doesn’t make it not garbage.
Smartphones are handy tools for sure, but just like that sweet, sweet E you scored earlier, being on it all the time is bad for you. Supplementing your life with the cool tools on your cell is great, but depending on a smart, little plastic box to think for you is stupid. (And stay out of my pants, Google.)