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My books can be purchased as e-books for only $1.99. If interested, just click here: Books.
Match Play is a golf/suspense novel. Dust of Autumn is a bloody one set in upstate New York. Prairie View is set in South Dakota, with a final scene atop Rattlesnake Butte. Life is the Arbor is a children's book about Rollie Rabbit and his friends (on about a fourth grade level). The Black Widow involves an elaborate extortion scheme. Doggy-Dog World is my memoir. And ES3 is a description of my method for examining English sentence structure.
In case anyone is interested in any of my past posts, you can find an archive list at the bottom of this page.

Friday, March 6

Un-Social Media


At the Arizona Broadway Theatre last week, just before the Streisand tribute show began, we watched a couple a few tables away. They were sitting across from each other, heads down, shoulders hunched, hands in front of them not quite clasping. They looked like two novitiates praying to God, in this case, the almighty Phone God. Their little thumbs were clicking and clacking away at some game app, neither one looking at or talking to the other, neither taking in their surroundings to see what or who was there. They didn’t care. They were lost in their "appiness." I just don’t get it. This last five or six years has seen such an explosion of cell phones and cell phone technology that now almost our entire population has one of these tiny hand-held computers, with constant babbling and texting, so much so that almost everyone has these busy thumbs and fingers and almost no one is saying anything meaningful. I keep asking myself, why is texting so fascinating? How is texting better than phone talk? Why is phone talk better than face-to-face conversation? Texting has also led to the silliness of text shorthand, with the subsequent loss of words and spelling and punctuation, the same kind of abbreviated messages that we now find on Twitter and Facebook. “Tweet” sounds like an adolescent trying to say “treat,” and almost all the tweets I’ve seen are pretty adolescent and certainly no treat to read.
Who in the future will be the guardians of language? Who will give us beautiful, meaningful essays and stories and novels? Who will see to it that no one misuses words like cliche or quash or forte (forcing cliche to be an adjective instead of its original noun, mistaking squash for quash, putting that unintended accented syllable on the end of forte)? Will all of civilization be lost in this barrage of inconsequential tweets and texts and Facebook chatter? As an old English teacher, I shudder to think of that linguistic future.

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Any comments? Write me at jertrav33@aol.com