Saturday, February 28, 2015

What would we do without cellphones?

It turns out that I think about a lot of things when I drive, especially if it's a long distance. As I drove down I-85 back home to Charlotte this weekend, I saw some cars parked on the side of the road sometimes with no people in or around the car and some with people outside of their car talking on their cellphones asking for help. As I was stopped in traffic twice, each because of two accidents that happened, I pondered more and paid attention to the sides of the road. I saw no payphones and I wondered how people got help before there were cellphones if they were stuck on the side of the road.

Maybe I didn't see payphones because today it is assumed that everyone with a car also has the ability to afford a cellphone, but what about people who don't own cellphones or back in the day when they didn't exist at all. It is hard to wrap my mind around how people got help when the only way they could communicate or call someone was from their house phone or a payphone. They had to walk and sometimes far distances.

We are a spoiled and very privledged generation because we have the luxary of calling someone if our car breaks down on the interstate. The most of our worries is if our phone is near death. It's nowhere near walking on the side of the interstate to reach the closest phone or flagging down a stranger who you could maybe trust.

Communication has definitely changed a lot since before the cellphone age. If the luxury of having a phone on the interstate was taken away from my generation then I honestly don't know what we would do or if we could survive. We have learned that one of the most common modes of communication during crises is through our phone, as opposed to other creative options people had to come up with when there weren't  mobile phones. When that privilege is taken away from us I feel like millennials especially could lose their minds.

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