Monday, July 1, 2013

i am a child of the twenty first century

I hate phone calls.
I hate making them.
I hate taking them.
I hate having to sit with a phone pressed to my ear, saying words into a person's ear, without fully knowing whether that person is, in fact, at all willing to listen to me say those words, or whether they want me to stop, or whether their face is screwed up in disgust because ew this person is so stupid.

Perhaps you will say that you never think that about someone who you're talking to on the phone. Perhaps you're right. However, I still much prefer talking to people face-to-face. I prefer even more managing to never see people face-to-face at all, and instead texting them, or popping them a Facebook message, or otherwise avoiding the unfortunate necessity of actually speaking to them.

I am told this is not a good thing.

However, it is a perfectly logical thing. Let me explain. If I send someone a text, they have a multitude of options. They can ignore that text, deleting it and sending it out into the cosmos. I will simply assume the text got lost in cyberspace, and unless it was really important, probably won't even bother sending another. They could also answer this text at their leisure if they so desire. That text will stay on their phone as long as they want it to. It will still be there in six years when they finally get around to answering my appeal for funds! It will still be there, just as it was the day I sent it, awaiting the kind person's pleasure! I'm not bothering them! They have freedom to answer whenever they choose! Texts have the added bonus of not being interruptible. People's words get in the way of other people's words, and if we just cut out people's ability to butt into other people's words until said person's words are done, then said person won't get nervous!

In a phone call, it's very hard to just ignore it. If you hit 'ignore', the person is going to know you hit ignore, because the call will cut out. This leads to inevitable hurt feelings, because you can't just ignore a call from a potential donor, or from your best friend, or from your Great-aunt Beth without there being serious repercussions. And there's the issue of having to call back. If you miss someone or go to their answering machine--yeah, you can leave a message...but you're still going to have to call back. And then you will have to say words, and these words could be interrupted and that's just awkward for everybody.

How do people words
I don't understand

A Facebook message also has many good perks. It has all the bonuses that come with texting, with the added amazingness that is everyone uses Facebook. Don't have somebody's number? No problem! No need to go be a creeper and use to stalk them down. You just find them on your friends list (or, occasionally, on your friend's friends list) and shoot them a message! And Facebook even notifies them for you! And bugs them if they don't answer you!

Of course, I will forever prefer simply talking face-to-face with someone. Because then, at least, you know whether you're bothering them or not. Sometimes. Then there's the poker-faced people who you know are judging you in their minds.

You can feel it. Like this crashing wave of disapproval. And it hurts. But at least you can see them, and know.

As an intern for CEF, though, I've got to raise support. Which means finding ministry partners. Which means I have to make phone calls. Which means I must put aside my discomfort as a child of the twenty-first century who is way better at writing words than she is at speaking them.

But it hurts.

So, dear people of the world, let us consider turning away from this odd invention that is the telephone, and going entirely to text-based communication. Again. Life was so much more comfortable when you wouldn't know precisely what somebody thought of you for six months.

- Kyla Denae

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