Are we becoming a land of hunchbacks? It seems that everywhere we look, everyone is walking, sitting and (Heaven help us) DRIVING with our heads down to look at our devices. As with anything, this can become a habit with pretty serious consequences. Not only is this habit bad for necks and shoulders, but it could be a potential killer.
There is actually a name for this condition: “distracted walking.” Some call them “dead walkers” because by not paying attention, they can easily become DEAD. The numbers rise every year for people who have walked into traffic while reading that all-important text or image. I remember a video that went viral about a woman in a mall who was so focused on her cell phone that she fell right into a fountain. You could hear the security folks in the background, laughing their heads.
And, if you can believe it, the woman had the gall to complain about those who laughed at her! She said, “I could have been seriously hurt, and they are laughing about it.” <Insert wah-waaaaaaahhhhh> sound effect here> Seriously, if you are so engrossed in your device that you can’t be bothered to look where you’re going, expect people to laugh long and loud when you fall into a fountain.
I’m no expert, and I don’t even own a SmartPhone (FYI, I have an old-fashioned flip-phone). But I know how addictive things like this can get. And we all have our little addictions, don’t we?
Jim Gaffigan, one of my favorite comedians, had a great monologue about McDonald’s and things that are like McDonald’s. Here’s a clip from it:
“I’m tired of people acting like they are better than McDonald’s. It’s like you never set foot in McDonald’s, but you have your own McDonald’s. Maybe instead of buying a Big Mac, you read US Weekly. Hey, that’s still McDonald’s. It’s just served up a little different. Maybe your McDonald’s just telling yourself that your Starbucks frappe-latte is not a milkshake. Or maybe you watch Glee. It’s all McDonald’s. McDonald’s of the soul.”
So if we do not want to be hit by a speeding SUV while checking Face Book as we amble across a busy street, how about we save the phone checking until we cross that street, pass that fountain in the mall, and so on. It could mean that you don’t turn into a hunchback. Or worse, a dead hunchback.