Can You Live Without Your Cellphone?

Swimming In The iPool

I just finished reading Stephen King’s Novel 11/22/63. It is a story about President Kennedy’s assassination that asks the question of what would you do if you could go back in time.

Would you try to change history?

It is a fascinating question and it could be the source of a million other posts about who you would like to meet, what you might do, whether you could change history and what impact it would have etc.

I loved the book and it is part of the reason why in a couple of hours I am going to The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza. I love history so it is somewhere I would visit anyway, but that is secondary here.

The question I am more interested in is whether you could live without your cellphone.


The obvious answer is that technically we all can. There are no apps that feed, clothe or shelter us. They might offer assistance in obtaining those things but they don’t provide them.

I love my phone. It serves as a mobile office, source of entertainment, GPS, communication device and resource assistant. When I leave the house without it is almost always because I made a conscious decision to leave it and it is usually because it is charging and I am outside talking to the neighbors.

I lived the majority of my life without my phone and there are moments when I don’t like feeling tethered to technology so I think about what it would take to cut that tie.

But I wonder about the younger generations and whether this thought would be anathema to them.  Can they conceive of a life without the phones, MP3 players and tablets?

Hell, I wonder if some of them know how to play and entertain themselves when they aren’t plugged in.

Would You Give Up Your Phone?

I am not a huge fan of how phones have impacted our patience. If you don’t respond to texts and emails in a timely fashion people start to get crazy.

The car used to be a place of solitude where the only interruptions were the radio, passengers and other drivers. Your commute between the office and home was your time.

Granted there is a level of convenience that comes from being able to contact people to ask them to pick up dinner/milk or remind them to meet you at the baseball game, but sometimes…

What about you? Is your phone a part of your daily life? Would it be hard to give it up or is it something that would be easy?

Would love to talk about it in the comments.

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  1. Mary Stephenson August 3, 2013 at 7:13 pm

    Hi Josh
    And the ride home is a scarier place now that people are on their phones, talking or worse yet texting!
    I am one of the few people on this planet who do not own a cell phone or don’t even want one.  They definitely have their advantage as there are no phone booths at street corners anymore.  Hubby has one and most of the time now that he is retired, forgets to carry it.  But when we are out and need to meet someone it comes in handy.
    As for kids, can they even carry on an intelligent conversation with anyone or make eye contact with someone.  Take their cell phone away and they would probably be lost or bored silly.  I grew up without TV or phone and someone that was 20 something asked me what did I do.   We played board games, played on the beach, did hobbies, did chores and did plenty of homework.  We had tons of imagination and enjoyed being outside, we did not need to be entertained.  We would never dare say we were bored, the folks would have given us some chores to do.

    • Joshua Wilner/A Writer Writes August 4, 2013 at 12:02 pm

      Mary Stephenson Hi Mary,
      Texting while driving is pretty scary. I hate seeing drivers whose heads aren’t facing the road for extended periods of time. A quick glance is one thing and even that is not great but…
      After I read your comment I spent a few minutes trying to remember when and where I last saw a phone booth and I couldn’t think of one.
      And you made me laugh with your last remark. I never would have said I was bored for exactly the reason you mentioned. It is a great way to get more chores. 😉

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