Yes, yes, yes. I’ve already told you quite a few times in writing how since I’ve been using my dumbphone, I can see more about what’s happing around me when everybody else begins to tune out of the group and tune into their phones.
So as I was sitting at a small birthday party for a group of five, it was all fun sharing the food with people I barely spend time with. Have you ever noticed how food gathers people and builds a relationship that wouldn’t be magically there otherwise?
Food brings people together.
And do you know what brings apart people who have gathered?
*drum roll, please*
Okay, that’s just me talking because I don’t have a smartphone then, even as I write this blog post. But I’m not bitter, okay? Yeah, you sound like you are. Ha, no, no, no.
So, hear me out for a bit.
While trying to add more wood to the conversation and keep it burning, one of us started to drift away into the digital world. And one by one, the rest of the group began to fumble with their devices until there was nothing left to say but to just scroll, scroll, and scroll.
You can practically hear an awkward silence. Should somebody start a new idea to talk about?
And speaking of breaking the ice, I realized I was forced to simply do nothing while everyone was drifting away. I wonder what people do to revamp dying conversations before the era of digital devices.
This experience brought back a memory from last year when I spent a few days in an off-grid community. Having our mobile phones useless in a place where telco service is unavailable, I was forced to immerse myself in the environment and be in tune with the people I was with. And being stripped of my working smartphone then (insert a crying emoji here; yes, this one 😭) compelled me to communicate face-to-face with people.