When cell phones became popular so did certain new behaviors. Telephone conversations were traditionally thought of as private activities and as the preference for the convenience of mobile apparatus gained popularity, experiments occurred.
One such common behavior existed in the hallways of large institutions in the corporate beltways of large cities. As one walked down any hall there could be seen dozens of handheld Motorola brick- phones, each one held to an ear, attached to a skull which rested atop a leaning body, with that head resting against the wall as though somehow this was a proven method for oreventing the sound waves from proceeding into the lives of nearby “others”.
A few years later there was a story going around about female college students placing their cell phones in their panties after setting them on vibrate. Cooperative boyfriends would then call during class. Text? No. Sext? Oh, so that’s where that word came from.
This afternoon I took a break from my Friday docent activities at the Gallery@CityHall. It was cold indoors; I wanted some of that 110 degree heat. Arriving on the patio I looked around for a smoking area, wanting to keep the occupants thereof at a safe distance.
Immediately I spotted a smoker 100 feet away texting in a manner I recognized immediately. The thumb on her left hand was pointed toward Heaven. The next two digits held a ciggie and the fourth finger handled text as her pinkie mimed the usual pinkie behavior that one normally associates with drinking tea from a tiny china cup.
As she pecked away, the ash grew long and eventually fell onto the screen; with a well-practiced “whoosh” from pursed lips she blew the ash away and continued texting, saving the connection without losing a stroke.
I wondered what was so important. Was she answering her lover who always called at this time of day, each of them smoking in a different garden, each of them with a hovering pinky, each of them whooshing fallen ash without missing a stroke.
Three minutes at 110 degrees. That’s enough; back to the gallery.