I’ll tell you what really gets on my nerves. It’s a teenaged girl with her face in her phone. If you look around you, you’ll spot this annoying phenomena everywhere you go. Hubby and I went out on a rare date (actually without the kids) to a nice restaurant recently, and I noticed that every girl under the age of 18 had her nose permanently plastered to her phone. Not a single one of them actually spoke to the people they were with. Did Congress pass a law recently and I missed it? “Hereby, all teenaged girls must never verbally communicate with their parents ever again, not even in extreme emergencies, unless it is by text.”
This is a disturbing trend, my friend. We have an entire generation of people who, when comprising the future workforce, will not be able to form complete sentences or speak in anything other than 3-letter acronyms. But, by god, they’ll be able to type 900 words a minute on tiny screens with their thumbs. Now there’s a skill that’s sure to guarantee a six-figure income. On second thought, maybe teens better learn to communicate with their parents, and also possibly their future supervisors, otherwise, I’m pretty sure they’ll be living in our spare bedrooms until they’re 41.
So if our fine federal legislature isn’t going to actually pass any laws about this texting thing, then I suppose I’m going to have to step in. After I got home from work yesterday, I marched into the living room and announced that, after much deliberation, texting will no longer be allowed during dinner. Harsh, I know. I’m like the Iron Lady around here. After some barking and gnashing of teeth from both members of the opposing side, I was then forced to employ my expert Defense Attorney skills, which I reserve for occasions such as this.
“But remember, it only takes you 5-and-a-half minutes to scarf down your dinner.”
“Oh,” they said in defeat.
Score one for moms of teen text addicts everywhere. Now maybe I can drag some actual multi-word sentences out of them for 5-and-a-half minutes each day. Hey, I’m a positive thinker.
Feeling smugly victorious, I went to cook the damn dinner. I glance over at Amanda, 16, who is busy furiously punching buttons on her godforsaken smart phone, and smiling and giggling to herself like a mental patient. She’s pretending to study AP World History, but I wasn’t born yesterday, baby. I happen to know that the German Holocaust was not at all funny. “Who ya’ texting over there, ‘Manda?”
“Oh, no one.” Which of course means her shiny, new boyfriend who is endlessly captivating. While pounding the mystery meat with a kitchen hammer (this is strangely satisfying), I nonchalantly attempt to wrangle more information from my typically tight-lipped teen. I am rewarded with incredibly articulate answers such as “Hmmph,” “I dunno,” and, my favorite, “Duh.”
Soon it’s time to sit down to another gourmet weeknight meal of Some Sort of Meat and Overcooked Vegetables. Hubby and I are eagerly looking forward to 5-and-a-half minutes of stimulating teen conversation. While discussing the latest stalker boy incident with Emily, 14, I look over at Amanda who’s smiling the mental patient smile again and staring into her lap. “OMG!” I scream a little too crazy-like, “Are you actually texting at the dinner table!” Amanda, never one to shy away from guilt when she’s caught, says….
“But, MOM! We’re having a f-a-s-c-i-n-a-t-i-n-g conversation right now, and he’s being soooooo cute!”
Civil disobedience is still disobedience, my friend. So I take the phone away for the remaining 3-and-a-half minutes of dinner, whereby she is then forced to contribute to the conversation with revealing utterances such as “mmmm, uh huh,” complete with eyerolls where appropriate.
After dinner, both girls can’t get out of here fast enough to “go study” which really means, in Amanda’s case, 6 more hours of “LOL, you’re so cute!” “No, LOL, you’re so cute…”
I’d like to petition Congress for a redress of grievances, and to possibly reconsider that law about texting. Maybe we could add an amendment to The Bill of Rights, wherein it will state – in proper legalese of course – “Put down that smart phone while your Mother is trying to talk to you!”
Does anybody know a good lawyer? If so, could you text me his number?