Being the observant college student that I am, I love to walk around campus, looking casually at passers-by, smile politely, and just take in their style and demeanor. As Strong Bad says, Everyone Is Different, so people-watching is an enjoyable activity, especially on a college campus. You might ask me, so Stephanie, what is the most common feature of today’s modern college student? Is it the ever-popular belly button ring? Or how about the lovely thong underwear? No I would reply without hesitation, as diverse as my college campus is, there is one thing almost all students here have in common: the cell phone.
The cell phone is an interesting little invention. The telephone was such a great idea, people wanted to have one with them at all times. At first this idea seemed preposterous: How could something with wires be carried around? Then suddenly, a break through: the mobile phone. Perhaps some of you remember these gadgets, as big as an oversized banana, that sat in bags on consoles in cars across the country. My dad had one, and it was a great step for his business—instead of being annoyed while at home, people could call him while he was on the road elsewhere. Eighties movies showed all the wealthy people having phones in their cars, and car phones were revolutionary. The technology got better, smarter, smaller, and now cell phones are everywhere.
Like the phone itself, my opinion towards cell phones has evolved drastically. I certainly never needed a cell phone in high school, because I didn’t get my license right away, so I never formulated an opinion towards cell phones. As a freshman here at Seton Hill, I began to realize the growth of the cell phone world. They were not uncommon devices, and I sometimes wished that I had one, because it was a long distance call to my boyfriend at home. I could not tolerate, however, the people who forgot to turn their cell phones off during class. Sophomore year, I had a 600 minute phone card, and I talked to my boyfriend whenever I wanted. I began to grow weary of the constant sight of people talking on cell phones, and the increase in people who received phone calls during class. Junior year, cell phones were everywhere. I couldn’t sit on a swing by Sullivan lawn for half an hour and not see someone talking on a cell phone. People talked on them on the way to class and in the lunch halls, and phones began going off during tests. My boyfriend and I broke up that spring, so I had no one long distance to call. I guess you could call it cell phone embitterment.
This past summer, I bought my first car. My darling Rosalie, my beautiful car, and I paid for her completely out of my own pocket. Since I was a driver, and since I was going to be driving, it became essential for me to have a cell phone in case of automobile emergency. On the way to school, my beautiful Rosalie, which was sabotaged by my mechanic, coughed and sputtered to a stop. She needs a new engine, they tell me—but I still have a cell phone. My cell phone doesn’t leave my person. It’s become a leech, attached to my side, just in case someone should call me. I’m on Verizon, and I have free nights and weekends in addition to unlimited IN calling. I talk to my friend Rachel for an hour and a half straight, and it doesn’t cost a penny. I call my family on the weekends, stay in touch with my siblings, and can plan my trips home with ease. I get text messages from friends in the middle of class, but I make damn sure my cell phone never rings or beeps.
Having a cell phone is a shackled sort of freedom. It becomes a necessary evil, attaching itself to you so that you can constantly be in contact. I hate how I’ve become about it, to the point where if I leave my room even for five seconds, I feel like I have to bring my cell phone with me. I can call whoever I want, whenever I want, from wherever I want—and they can do the same to me. Since there’s no such thing as long distance, I can call my friend Nicole in Long Island just as easily as I can call my friend Rachel in Greensburg.
I can definitely see where having a cell phone has its benefits, especially when my car broke down half way to Seton Hill. It’s like a security blanket, almost. Even though I know I used to hate cell phones with a fiery passion, I’m kind of glad that I have one. The ability to keep in touch with my sisters and brother, and my other long-distance friends, without having to worry about a phone card—the cost is really insignificant. I love being able to call my sister on a Saturday morning, talk to my awesome nephews, or call Rachel just to chat (about boys). Though my conversations may be a far cry from Bell and “Watson, come here, I need you” in 1876, the ability to reach out and touch someone often makes my day a little brighter.
~StephaniePosted by StephanieReigh at October 11, 2004 07:09 PM