Text, drugs and rock-n-roll

I can handle the stress (I hope), as well as the hours, the gore, the violence and the drug and alcohol induced craziness (of others, of course) my new beat will most likely entail. And as The Evening Sunís latest in a long line of police, fire and emergency management (not to mention court) reporters, Iím well-prepared for all of the above. Really, I am.

Can you tell Iím trying to convince myself?

Maybe itís just my inner Jimi Hendrix talking, but my most recent journalistic assignment feels more like the ďrock-n-roll beatĒ than anything Iíve previously tackled here at our hometown daily. It has the potential to be fast-paced, exciting and Ė I would imagine Ė even a little dangerous at times. Kind of like playing the guitar in a raunchy, sweaty, smoke-filled tavern somewhere on the edge of town, which Iíve been doing for over 20 years now.

What Iím not prepared for, however (as our esteemed editor would call it), is the 21st century. To be more specific, I fear texting.

Those who know me best are well aware of my long-held distaste for the activity, especially when it comes to the strange, alien way of non-spelling Ė even the simplest words, I might add Ė most text addicts employ. In fact, Iím sure if someone could come up with an abbreviated way to spell ďI,Ē texters the world over would embrace it wholeheartedly.

Which is sad, when you consider our countryís diminishing skills in reading, writing, spelling and proper grammar. Not that Iím any kind of genius when it comes to any of those four subjects, but hey, Iím not a total slouch either. Just saying.

Regardless, it seems Iíve put it off long enough (this whole texting thing) and Iím sure that Ė in no time at all Ė Iíll be sucked in like the rest of you, tapping away at a minuscule keyboard (or touchscreen!) while walking, driving, reading (yes, Iíve seen people text while reading, which is quite a talent, really), sleeping, eating, riding a bike and well, just about anything else you could think of.

I refuse, however, to take part in this LOL, BRB, 2NT, AAMOF and AFAIUI nonsense. And if you can decipher any of that (I had to look it up online, as a matter of fact), Iíd say you have a serious, serious problem on your hands (or in your hands ... pun intended).

I guess Iíve never understood the general populationís fascination with the all-mighty text, to be honest. Personally, Iíve always found it easier to simply call someone (how old-fashioned of me). And while Iím well aware that there are some seriously fast, maniacal texters out there, wouldnít a quick phone call be just as easy, not to mention more ... personal?

Even funnier (hysterically so), if you ask me, these new-fangled phones which can translate the spoken word into text format. Thatís right, now you donít even have to waste time typing your texts, you can simply speak and send. I donít know about you, but that strikes me as one of the most ridiculous things Iíve ever heard ... man invents cell phone, man invents text so he doesnít have to talk on cell phone, man invents voice recognition so he doesnít have to type text on cell phone, and so on and so forth.

Just thinking about it gives me a headache.

As for me, Iím sure my new cell will have all kinds of nifty features, if I can figure out how to use them, that is. And while many of those features will be the same as the ones on my current phone (a now-historic, 1990s model of some kind), that doesnít mean Iíll have any clue as to how they work.

Letís see, built-in camera (never really tried that out), calculator, alarm clock, GPS (whatís a GPS?), calendar, stopwatch, flashlight (flashlight?) and, of course, e-mail. All I can say is ... wow.

All these years and I had no idea my phone could do all of this. And here Iíve always used the blasted thing for making phone calls. Who wouldíve thought?

Follow me on Twitter ... @evesunbrian.

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