We Millenials have a pretty bad memory — like one step above Dory. We’ve all done the classic schtick of yelling that we can’t find our glasses only to discover that they were sitting on our face the whole time, literally right in front of us. It’s not uncommon to forget our own age from time to time, and the reason Google Maps exists is because of our inability to recall directions.
This all being said, we tend not to misplace our phones. This is probably because of the fact that we can’t ever seem to be without them.
It’s a bit of a miracle, we can’t remember where we put her own feet, but we’re never without a three-by-six-inch metal box. Lord knows why, it’s not like anything we do on there is even vaguely important. Some of us don’t even have a passcode on the thing — its contents are that insignificant. Containing all our social media platforms, the blasted phone has all but physically morphed into a singular being with our hands. The home button of our iPhones gets more action than the frisky teens in the back of a steamy car at midnight. We hit that button like the world is crashing and burning around us — which is pretty much what it feels like if we ever have to go without Snapchat for an extended period of time.
On another seemingly unrelated and yet completely related note, we’re all rather unimportant. We don’t hold any government secrets and we know nothing about the Illuminati. The success of a workplace doesn’t yet depend on our input or approval, nor are we making any ground-breaking discoveries worthy of sharing. Honestly, we are heroically insignificant in terms of the need for constructive communication. There’s really no reason for us to constantly be checking our phones in a compulsive manner, but that doesn’t stop us.
Two weeks ago, I went camping in Mammoth Mountain for a week and made the conscious decision to leave my phone off the entire time. I do this every year, but this time I brought it with me rather than leaving it at home. Having the little box nearby but inaccessible was similar to a drug addict working at your local pharmacy. That’s how real the temptation was in the beginning. At first, all I could do was hiss at the sunlight and sarcastically seek tools to churn my own butter without modern technology.
Once the initial withdrawal symptoms wore off and the shakes subsided, I discovered wonders such as trees, books and ants. Yes, I truly spent an embarrassingly long period of time watching some beast ants haul a giant Cheerio across mountains of dirt. Those little suckers can pull like you wouldn’t believe, totally proving that teamwork makes the dream work. Where were we going with this? Oh right, phones.
Amazingly, the world didn’t cease to turn when I shut off my phone and tuned out for a while. The stock market didn’t crash, no fires broke out and nobody’s life was hanging in the balance without me. There was never a moment of my trip that I wished I could have been staring through a screen … aside from maybe the ant situation — I considered asking one of those studs for their autograph. I’m not going to be your parent and tell you to put your phone down and go play outside. After all, if you go outside and don’t Snapchat it, did it ever really happen?
Contact Amanda Chung at [email protected].