I've turned into one of them

It happened to me. Five years ago my oldest son was a senior at Douglas High School. He got a job at the local grocery store bagging groceries. With his very first paycheck he went out and bought a cell phone with a two-year contract commitment. He didn't learn this from me because I would have wanted to make sure I lasted at the job a little while before making such a long-term commitment.

Anyway, we would be driving home up Johnson Lane and he would be talking on his cell phone while driving. I would yell at him to pull over and I would drive. What could be so important that he couldn't wait three more minutes until we pulled into the driveway and he could call from home? He'd tell me, "Mom, it's important."

I got into the habit once he left for the Navy of counting how many people coming down Johnson Lane toward the freeway would be talking on their cell phones. It is staggering. On almost any day I can count four out of five. Why can't these people call from home before they leave and take care of their business?

And then there is Wal-Mart. Not one shopping trip will go by when I don't see a couple dozen people on the cell phone while shopping. Then there is the checkout line when the checker is trying to collect money and the person is talking on the cell phone holding up the line for the rest of us.

And how about when you are in the waiting room at your doctor's office and more than one person waiting is talking on their cell phone?

The problem is I have become one of them. I was driving down Johnson Lane yesterday on the way to the gym and was unable before I left home to get a hold of my parents to set up a meeting point for lunch that day. Why didn't I do it the day before? I didn't think of it until last minute. Why didn't I call before I left the house? I did, but their phone was busy.

I even read that new cars have a CD deck that with a push of a button you can talk on your Bluetooth hands free. That sounds good for the people in businesses that are on their cell while driving.

The cell phone is truly a miracle in our lives, to be able to connect with someone right away, but I think we have come disrespectful also. I try not to talk and drive because I see how dangerous that is, especially with a five-speed transmission. I never take my phone into church with me. I try not to use it while shopping unless I forgot something. But, they sure are convenient and I am one of you.

-- Lisa Welch is a Johnson Lane resident and can be reached at 267-9350.


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