Necessity or luxury?

I was out with some ex co-workers a few weeks ago when some of them started ragging on Herb because he didn’t own a cellphone. The conversation took a turn before I got a chance to defend Herb’s position.

Herb is a super smart software engineer who I’m sure has no problem with the technology of cellphones.  Herb is also semi-retired, spending a lot of time at home.  Herb’s position is that if someone needs to get a hold of him and he’s not home, they can leave a message and he’ll return their call when he can. I’m with Herb.

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Remember years ago when cell phones were heavier and featureless (you could make a call and that’s about it) and expensive to own?  Remember when only the adults in the family owned a cellphone and maybe they owned one to share in case of emergencies?  Remember when you were growing up and cellphones didn’t even exist?   How did we ever survive without them?  <shaking head>

Just because the technology exists doesn’t mean you have to use it. My cousin Kathy, who’s a nurse and a few years older than me, has never owned a computer and just last year bought a cellphone she can text with.  She uses a computer at work but doesn’t feel she has the time to spend on a computer.  Good for her.  I know that once I get on my computer for the night I usually don’t get off until it’s time to go to bed so I delay getting on in order to spend my time more productively.

Since when did owning a cellphone become a necessity instead of a luxury? Just because some people can’t live without their cellphones doesn’t mean everyone needs to have one.


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