…about cell phone etiquette

29 October 2011

There’s nothing like a cell phone to make a self-absorbed person behave as if it really is all about him (or her, as the case may be).

Cell phone beside cup of coffeeThe guy in the coffee shop this morning was a walking illustration for self-image-defeating stereotypes. First off, he was rather short, which is always a struggle for men. For whatever reason, height equals power in the minds of most people, but especially in the minds of men who perceive themselves as short.

Add to this that, in spite of his use of the shaved-head approach to denying a receding hairline, said hairline’s notable retreat was obvious. Baldness seems to be an emasculating condition for men as well, although I’ve never understood why. I mean, my argument is that apes have lots of hair, Neanderthals have less hair, most people have even less hair (I do know some exceptions), and I have less hair than most people. Sounds like evolution to me! But I digress…

The guy received a phone call while he was in the line for his double-double, and his phone manner was so loud and brash that he drew the attention of nearly everyone in the shop. I would propose that this is exactly what he wanted to do, to convince us that he was a big shot. From a glance around the room, I’d say that my fellow patrons and I shared roughly the same thought: “Who is this loudmouth and what will it take for him to go away?”

Seriously, I don’t know why guys feel the need to posture in a room full of strangers. He had a female companion, so perhaps he was just showing-off for her benefit. I have to ask: ladies, does that shit really work on you? For her part, she just looked relieved when she was able to get him outside, away from the Looks of Death coming from not-quite-awake caffeine consumers.

I will grant that the cell phone may be no more than an accomplice in this guy’s criminal lack of good manners. It just seems to me that this little device has the ability to bring out some very undesirable behaviour. It isn’t difficult when traveling on public transit, for instance, to hear people talking about matters for which they should be seeing a therapist. The TV soap operas are suffering because we don’t need them to live vicariously through others – we can do that in a grocery store line-up.

I feel that my worst offense is that I let my cell phone manage my time and focus. I’m not talking about the cool apps that tell me when I have meetings. No, it has gone way beyond that level of control. If my cell phone rings or receives a text message, I reach for it. If my phone is on, I give it some of my attention because it might ring. If it is off, I secretly wonder if I am missing important calls. Please tell me I’m not the only one doing this!

We need to communicate. It’s the way we’re wired. As with so many other things, the tricky bits are the “when” and the “how.”


…about working from home

26 October 2011

It sounds like a dream, doesn’t it? Get up, pour a coffee, and plunk down in front of the computer. That’s the morning commute to work. Tough, huh?

Like the teaser for a movie, that’s the good bit. The not-so-good bit comes when you actually try to get something done. For some reason, people assume that working from home means not really working, so you are free to be interrupted for any reason whatsoever.

For some people, this may be okay. For me, not so much. I need time to get into my groove. Once I’m there, I can surprise even myself with how much I can accomplish. But it takes so little for my train of thought to be derailed.  Once it is off the tracks, I’m done for the afternoon.

This used to frustrate me to no end. Why couldn’t I get back with the task at hand, and just pick up where I left off? I got the beginnings of my answer from a podcast that Joanna Penn did with Livia Blackburne. Hopefully I’m not overextending her meaning when I say that creative thinking is something that, unlike logical thinking, can’t be forced. I can’t MAKE myself think creatively, but I can back off and let myself think creatively.

Is that the Muse that writers talk about? It seems plausible to me. Connecting with our Muse may be nothing more than telling our logical minds to shut the hell up. The dreaded Writer’s Block (insert dramatic music here) may simply be that we are trying to force a creative solution, and it just doesn’t work that way.

If anyone knows a quick and easy way to regroup oneself after an interruption, I’d love to hear it. I fear that no such method exists and, that as a writer interrupted, one must coax our Muse gently in order to regain her hand.

In the meantime, I will lock myself away in my spare bedroom/home office, and do my best to not emotionally scar those who derail my train of thought. Wish me luck!

-= C =-


…about this blogging thing

17 October 2011

A boy and his laptopFor someone who loves and lives by his writing, blogging shouldn’t be that hard, should it? Yeah, and so dies another myth! Still, I hope to provide some meaningful and thought provoking mental meanderings very soon. Don’t be strangers – let me know what you think. I may be opinionated, but I’m not inflexible!

Talk to you soon!

-= C =-


%d bloggers like this: