I was giving a short lecture yesterday at the Art Center College of Design when I noticed one student in the middle, scrolling on his iPhone.
He was doing that earlier during another lecture as well; I made a mental note to check on him while I was speaking. My lecture was on the benefits of Flickr. ,Flickr. has been very good to me - 6 books, 3 art shows, a dvd series, and more. I was there to blast the benefits of Flickr and the online experience of networking to graduating photo students, out of a class of 15, only 3 used Flickr.
Back to the kid with the iPhone. Halfway through the lecture I saw him scrolling through on his screen.
"HEY! I'm talking here. Next time you give a lecture, remind me to bring my phone too."
"Oh, I wasn't, I was...."
End of story. That is just so fricking rude. I take two hours of my busy day to trot up there and this kid decides to check his emails/texts. Karma will hit when he's showing his portfolio and the art director decides to check his Blackberry for the latest hilarious youtubes. The kid must of thought he was in his own private stealth bubble and that no one would notice, and if they did, they wouldn't take offense.
Just Call Me Cranky
I see kids text at restaurants while they are eating with their families. Even my kid did it and I pulled out mine and texted him to stop. Their need to connect virtually while with humans is unprecedented; I can't think of any other generation needing to connect outside of the present group - unless it was eating in front of the television on rickety tv trays.
Since when is being with another living breathing human not enough?
From what I see, in the near future being with a human will be not necessary anymore. We email, we text, we barely use the phone. Our voices are becoming just an accessory when we need to order a latte. The human voice will go the way of snail mail, and become a quaint hobby. Our enunciation will go down the drain, we will mumble and give up and just text our replies.
"Yeah I'm talking to you."
So a warning to any kid I see text during a lecture, if you ever have to actually use your voice it will be just a dry whisp, an unused muscle that has atrophied to soft cellulite. Put down the device and start using your words, it's all you will have left if the power ever goes off.
Image: Ophelia Chong / Mistress to an Age