Monday, December 10, 2012

I’m Still the Same Person (I just live in a different state)

My commute to and from work has given me a ton to think about. Not that its odd for me to be thinking while driving, since thinking always occurs anyway and the topics usually change.  But this topic… can I say or not say it exactly.  So while I do not choose to offend anyone I’m sure I will anyway, but it’s the truth, and I’m willing to accept it if you are. 
                I’m the first to admit I’m bad at calling people back – yes actually calling people back.  I find that time is never enough and I don’t like to talk while driving either, since 90% of this summer I drove with the windows down.  (Yes I like the fresh hot humid air thank you.)  I can’t talk at work either, everyone can hear everyone else's conversations since the renovation and its horrible.  I could call at 12, or 12:30, or 1 pm.  I’m not sure how that would work either, depending on who I'm calling.  I’m not that bad at responding to emails or messages (I think).  I am not on FB 24/7 like some of you are, connected to the world 24/7 with the latest smart phone gadget ( I don’t want to be that accessible and exploit my life).  My real friends know how to get in touch with me and know what I’m up to.  I can’t access FB at work (not that I would choose to anyway) and I’m not about to run home, log on and see a repeat of what people post everyday.  I don’t care if you took little Johnny to the park (again).  I really don’t, and I wouldn’t dare post where I’m at on a Friday night in hopes that all 200+ friends of mine might see it to come join me.  Heck no!  It’s a virtual friendship network and any true friend, again, I’m repeating here, really knows how to get me. 
                While I’m apologizing, I’ll tread on this plank that I’ve never tread on before (in the virtual world).  I’ve lost friends, a ton of friends over the years.  Most of which dump me because I don’t have any kids, I’m looked at differently because I’m divorced, no kids.  Yeah and?  I’m still the same person as I was before, what’s the difference?  I admit over the years even when I was married I turned down bar-be-que and party invites for stupid reasons, partly because the ex worked a lot, the drive there, and because we might have had other plans.  I would have went alone, in fact I should have.  I regret that now, but even if I don’t make your party and I try to meet up with you over the years, at least get back to me (answer an email, a voicemail) and set a date.  I’m sorry I don’t have kids, that going to ‘bring your own kid’ parties are frustrating because I can’t fit in with the ‘mommy’ conversations.  What would I say anyway “Hi, I’m single, dating and I’m having a great time.”
                I’m an hour away from my friends or my friends that choose to disown me, I was always a distance from them no matter where I’ve lived.  But that doesn’t mean we couldn’t meet up halfway somewhere.  Hey, we’re all busy, technology makes us busy (if we let it), and so busy that we spend 2 minutes uploading a photo to FB when those 2 minutes could have been spent trying to make plans with friends you haven’t seen in a while.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Don't 'like' to 'check in'

Buying gas this morning and always being in the habit of ‘checking in’ to Foursquare made me realize today that this app is not getting me anywhere.  The app is not rewarding me besides bragging rights for mayorships for being such a creature of habit by checking in every time I enter a store, etc.  It got me thinking all it does is allow my friends to ‘stalk’ me besides compete for mayorships.  Again, this goes along with my thoughts on ‘liking’ a page because those sponsors, brands, retailers who don’t give us anything either.  In fact, they are taking from us. 

By ‘checking in’ we are allowing that application and  all its affiliates to track us, track our spending, track our entertainment, where we go, where we eat, what we like to do, who we might have ‘checked in’ with. They are learning about us (similar to us being watched by those we cannot see from space).  The information they are gathering about us, about our friends, about their friends, all through a small button called ‘check in’ or ‘like’ is phenomenal.  No wonder my inbox is getting hammered with more junk mail, I can’t prove they are selling my information to third party vendors, this is just a theory.
Another theory I have is that society is preparing us for the end of days, moreso for the days where we cannot leave the house.  Think about it, they want us to post pictures, tag others, share interests all online.  Even a simple RSVP by a small button on the internet is foreign to some.  So instead of physically having people over for the holidays, we are seeing photos of Christmas trees being decorated, children taking pictures with Santa Claus.  Taking the personal out of Christmas, holidays and the day to day interaction of people on a physical level.  Could this be brainwashing us in the event the earth goes through a devastation prohibiting us from leaving the house? Are they preparing us – subliminally in hopes to not cause mass chaos when and if it does happen?  Just a thought, it does make sense to me at least.

As of today, I am ‘unliking’ pages I have liked (at least by having a store credit card they send me monthly coupons and/or accumulate points to purchase other items).  I am not ‘checking in’ anymore to places where I could be stalked, that don’t reward or award for any purpose other than to track my whereabouts.  It’s taking up too much valuable time when I could be doing something else more rewarding.

You may think I am overreacting, overthinking this, and becoming paranoid.  The honest truth of the matter is our identity is who we are, where we live and what we do, our time is precious, our privacy sacred.  For any app or internet service to take advantage of that secretly, and for anyone else to have access to that information is purely not acceptable (hence the increase of identity theft).  Might as well carry a tracking device on our backs, similar to EZPass or hire a PI.  I will not ‘check in’ with the  brainwashed at least not until those from space decide to ‘like’ my mind.