Monthly Archives: January 2018

Can you fit it in one message?

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Can you fit it in one message?

Call me old-fashioned, but I miss paragraphs. No, let’s have it right, I miss coherent sentences. Some may call me a Luddite when I admit that I am irked  by the way social media has altered people’s way of communicating. Don’t get me wrong; I love using whatsapp and Instagram to stay in touch, especially internationally, but my inner book worm gets all discombobulated when people seem unable to write more than one idea, nay, more than word, in a message.

For example (each line representing a new message from the same person):

Hi

 

how are you?

are you going tonight?

to the gym?

zumba, 7pm

PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE! What the actual fuck is that about? How is sending five separate messages more efficient than sending one, which contains all the info? Many a time has my iphone almost met an untimely end with the wall, as it buzzes and buzzes with message after message.Why, why, WHY?

Well, here’s one theory. Because people are constantly being distracted by their mobiles, it seems like they cannot stay focused on anything for longer than your average goldfish. Various articles now cite 8 seconds as the average human attention span http://time.com/3858309/attention-spans-goldfish/ With messaging apps, many people are unable to construct a logical, if minute paragraph of text consisting of greeting, questions and/or necessary information. They cannot filter their thoughts, instead spewing out whatever enters their brains in a post-modern stream of consciousness which leaves me ready to stamp on my phone. I have enough problems dealing with my own stream of consciousness. I really don’t need anybody else’s, thanks all the same.

Gone are the days (my husband laments) when we had to struggle to fit everything into a 160 character text message that would cost you at least 10p to send. This led to all sorts of creative word jiggling, often with multiple drafting to omit any characters superfluous to meaning. For example:

Hi,how ru?comin out 2nite?band on 9pm.£5 in.cu there?

And while some of our college teachers worried that we would lose the ability to spell ‘proper English,’ txt spk was just a carefully considered means to an end. It could even be argued that text speak was an art from, omitting vowels and inventing condensed ways to express meaning; even making pictures. With the advent of unlimited messages, data and wifi, nobody has to consider the consequences of anything. There’s no worrying about how much credit you’ve got; if you got enough money on your phone to last the weekend; if that extra word will cost you an extra 10p. Unlimited messaging sometimes means unlimited drivel; people don’t have to get the point and make their meaning clear because it doesn’t cost them anything to send whatever pops into their head.

As I’ve said, I’m happy using messaging apps to stay in touch with friends and family. I’d just prefer a less distracting, longer message than the constant ‘prodding’ of multiple, miniscule messages.

Thnx 😉

 

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I hate shopping (circa. October 2017)

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I hate shopping (circa. October 2017)

“Why can’t I be more like other women?” This is a question I almost never ask myself. Flawed though I am, I’m content enough being me. Today, however, after a 3 hour shopping trip that produced just one purchase, I found myself asking this question.

For me, clothes shopping is not the fun, relaxing, stress-release that is portrayed in popular culture and experienced by my friends. For me, clothes shopping is akin to a trip to the seventh circle of Hell. I HATE it. I hate it the most when I need something specific: a dress for a friend’s wedding; work clothes; new shoes; let’s face it, new clothes in general. Part of the problem is that I am not very materialistic – I have never felt the urge to have the latest styles/shoes/phone/other goods. I don’t get a buzz from spending on things I don’t need. I don’t want things I don’t need. So I only go shopping when I need something.

So now, I seriously need some new clothes. To be honest, I need a whole new wardrobe, as I don’t wear most of what I currently own; I’ve had a lot of it for too long. I would like some new styles, a slightly different look. I am bored. But although I look in magazines and at what other people are wearing, when I get to the shops, it just doesn’t transfer. Today,  I saw lots of colours I like (dark red, dark green) and styles I love (grungey, 90s) but I just can’t put it all together.

I wander, touching things, picking up the odd thing to try on, forcing myself not to buy yet another stripey jumper or t-shirt. Sometimes I try loads of things on, and only one item looks good or fits well. It’s just such a drag. All the trying on and taking off, looking in mirrors, realising that you’re a different size in every shop you go to. Sometimes it’s easier if a friend or family member is there, but I feel guilty asking anyone to go with me. Maybe they don’t mind so much. But if shopping for myself is my idea of hell, then so is being dragged around the shops by someone else. So I usually undertake the painful exercise alone.

Before anyone suggests online shopping, that isn’t for me either. There are three fundamental problems: 1. Too much choice. Anyone who’s met me knows that ‘indecisive’ is my middle name, so the sheer volume of variety is just overwhelming. 2. I’m a tactile shopper. I like touching things, picking them up, trying them on. Not possible online. 3. I am impatient, yet lazy. I don’t want to have to wait for purchases to be delivered before trying them on, only to have to go to the trouble of returning them if they are unsuitable. Better to waste a couple of hours in one go at the mall than even more, painfully dragged out over a week or two.

So today, I managed to buy one pair of skinny jeans. Something that was on my list, but not one of the things I most needed. Maybe I should advertise on Gumtree (if it exists in Spain) for someone who loves shopping and fashion to come with me. I could be their little project! Failing that, does anyone know how I can reach Gok Wan?