Sunday, December 20, 2015

47 texts

Tonight I was included in a group text asking a few people if they wanted to do dinner later this week. Forty-seven texts later I think we are finally done discussing dinner. Someone is going to pick up their phone later tonight and wonder why they have 47 texts, and then be really annoyed when they find out that all 47 texts are about the point of a progressive dinner (which, it turns out, involves progressing from house to house for each course and not, as my more politically-minded friends would assume, inviting a bunch of liberals around to discuss feminism and gay marriage over vegan entrées).

No matter which group of friends you're texting, in each group text you tend to have a typical breakdown. There's the person who sent the text. There's the people who respond with a simple "I'm in" or "Sounds good." There is the person who decides it's a good idea to have an entire conversation with the original sender via the group thread instead of switching to a private thread. There are the people who get pulled into that conversation against their better judgment. There is the person who lurks, reading the entire conversation without ever actually responding so everyone has no idea if they ever saw the message and plan on attending or have actually been eaten by wolves. There is the person who at some point sends a random text in the middle of the conversation that no one is entirely sure what they meant but at this point no one wants to ask and add another text to the growing number of notifications everyone is receiving. And then there is the person who eventually puts a halt to the conversation with an annoyed text about how their phone is almost out of batteries and they're in a meeting and NOT EVERYONE CARES ABOUT THIS CONVERSATION (but you know I love you guys, smiley face emoji).

That's technology for you: With every new advance in technological communication comes new and inventive ways of annoying each other. When Facebook became popular you may have thought you stopped Aunt Bertha from sending you so many chain emails when you showed her how to post memes to her wall. But then she started sending you Farmville requests and that was somehow even worse. And when email was invented you may have thought that you had found a way to cut down on the number of times your coworker called a 30-minute meeting to come up with a schedule for more meetings. But instead those co-workers just switched to hitting "Reply all" and writing "Thank you for sending this" in response to every email, guilting half the office into doing the same thing so they don't look like ungrateful swine for not being thankful enough for getting the agenda for tomorrow's meeting.

Yay technology.

I'm not sure what the equivalent was back in the olden days.

"Sorry guys, we don't have enough wood to get through the rest of the winter because Dave had to send me 13 different smoke signals last week describing what he had for lunch."

"Dang it Dave, I don't have any more room in this cage for one more carrier pigeon about how the liberal media has been unfair to Napoleon!"

"Dave, I hope it was worth another Pony Express pony dying of exhaustion so you could write me a letter saying "Haha same."

"Dear Dave STOP that's not a period at the end of the sentence STOP I actually mean STOP STOP"

I'm sure 100 years from now there will still be Daves in the world, sending one too many holograms to his friend about what he had for breakfast. And since his friends know they have all been guilty of similar technology annoyances at one point or another in their lives, they will forgive Dave after sending him a hologram saying "Some of us are in a meeting right now, Dave!"

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