textingLet me ask you something: What do you think the most annoying thing about cellphones, and cell phone culture, is? Is it that no one knows how to have a convo IRL anymore? Is it that no one really L's OL because they're too busy tippy-tappying away on their phone? Or is that no matter where you go, at any given moment, you're surrounded by people who are face-down, staring at a mini glowing screen?

If you said any of these -- or any normal reponse -- your answer is wrong. Well, it's not wrong; it's actually very right -- in my eyes. But in other people's eyes -- IE, people who participated in a recent study -- it is. In fact, their top complaint is: People don't use their cellphones enough.

Did we just enter an alternate universe?

In the study, conducted by Pew Internet and American Life, 40% of cell owners say that people they know have complained about their not responding promptly to calls or text messages. And 33% said they’ve heard complaints that they don’t check their phone frequently enough.

Don't check their phones frequently enough? Don't people get into accidents every day because they can't put down their phones for 5 seconds? How on earth could people not be on their phones enough?

See, this is the problem with our cell-obsessed culture. Not to sound a million years old, but: We all expect instant gratification 24:7. Before cellphones, it could be days before we heard back from people. Now if we have to wait longer than a hour, it's annoying to us. That's ridiculous.

Cellphones and smartphones are awesome for many reasons -- we can text; find directions at the drop of a dime; snap a photo at any given moment. But one way that they're not awesome, to me at least, is the expectation to be available constantly. I might not be busy doing something awesome, but sometimes a girl just needs to unplug, man.

Do you have your phone on you at all times?

 

Image via Jhaymesisviphotography/Flickr