(1) I love to text. My thumbs fly so fast you would not believe. There’s nothing more gratifying than the three little dots that says “they’re writing something at this very moment! In a few short moments, unless they get a phone call, have to take something hot off the stove, have an urge to do something different, or feel like totally ignoring me, I’ll know what they are thinking!” Yay!
(2) Come to think of it, phone calls are actually more efficient. As a bonus you get to hear awkward pauses, which is a delightful hobby. Why did we start texting, anyway?
(3) Oh yes, I remember. Because you don’t have to speak to anyone. And you sound more intelligent when you write rather than dumbly asking your man how his day was. It was fine? Super. You ate grilled chicken for dinner? Awesome. And your day? Oh I already asked that.
(4) Conversely, you can’t save them like love letters. Printed screen shots just aren’t the same. It’s perhaps a bit weird and creepy to print out volumes of screen shot text messages. I imagine strange giggling and Saturday nights spent scrapbooking.
(5) My mom started to text. Which means at 10 am when I’m sitting in a meeting I get reminded to buy a crock pot and that next summer we’re getting together for July 4 and random thoughts like “I watched five minutes of Honey Boo Boo and who watches this stuff because this show is awful and your father is cooking eggs” and your boss keeps glaring at you for your buzzing phone. Little does he know its just mom, stream-of-conscious asking if you turned off your coffee maker.
(6) The standard test for if a friend will make it past the introductory text phase is whether they can handle humor via text or whether all snarky throw downs will end with an LOL and a smiley face for the loss. That being said there are times that I’m just tired and a good solid LOL is all I can muster. It’s a marathon, not a sprint.
(7) I am the worst at not being able to get in touch with a coworker so I just naturally assume that I can text them like “hey buddy, so sorry to bug you but can you just stop everything you’re doing and pay attention to me because I have this work issue that’s super important (to me only) and I need you to be interrupted during your chipotle burrito to explain this complex financial arrangement to me real quick-like? THANKS!!” or the like.
(8) I’ve found that including the standard smiley-faced emoticon conveys a decent amount of normalcy or perhaps diffuses a humorous statement. Yet more intricate pictures seem to scream “I’m a nerd and found out there’s a Spanish dancer twirly-skirt lady in my picture file so I’ll choose to use it” and you don’t want to be that guy
(9) I love it when someone texts an obvious mistake like “I’ll be there at eight because I’m running a little lame” and then later you get the follow-up text that says “late” like you couldn’t possibly figure out what they meant by using standard context and you would just naturally just assume they were talking smack about themselves and they needed to clear up the rumors
(10) Most of my best friends answer about half of my texts because they have a life and could possibly fail to care for their children or not have time to eat or shave their legs if they answered them all but then the next day I’ll get a picture of Chunk, Missouri with a statement like “who the heck names a town Chunk” and then all is forgiven for not commenting on my cute kid pictures because I am a lover of random texts.
There are times, however, that I miss the days of talking for hours. I yearn for the flavor and tenor of a human voice. I miss the nervous talking over each other and twirling the cord in your hand and the amount of openness it takes to talk without the shield and power of words and time to prepare them. And most importantly, you have to form a coherent verbal response instead of just saying HAHA! LOL! Rolling on the floor laughing! Seriously? I’ve never seen anyone roll on the floor unless it part of a fire drill, and they are usually cursing under their breath.
So as many reasons as there are to love texting – for it’s convenience and it’s ability to hide behind words – it’s good to pick up the phone sometimes, just to go through the exercise of speaking to another human being. To find out that we are human, and raw, and awkward. To lift your head up and look around you. Maybe at the core, we are all just scared we’ll look stupid and hide behind machines to be safe.
Be different. Brave. Put your thumbs down. Talk to one other.