A Captive’s Recount


It was upon us so suddenly.

First, the important people were identified by their pagers. Whatever they did, it was important for other important people to be able to get in touch with them on short notice. You’d see them everywhere receiving pages and then finding a phone.

Then, newer pagers for more important people began to include text messaging to provide the important people 2-way communications. And the pagers started to provide weather reports and updates on news and sports and the latest music and entertainment news and up to the minute stock reporting. And we began to wonder why all this was needed. And it was reasoned theses important people lived for their businesses and yet made themselves available twenty-four hours a day and deserved some relief--who could doubt their loyalty?  And there were pretenders, those who wanted the status of being so important they too had to have a pager.

Before long the important people had mobile phones, later known as cell phones. They were too important to go looking for the pay phones that still existed then. And there were Personal Digital Assistants, called PDAs. And the cell phones had instant-connect for the really important people– if someone was really important or commanded really important functions, they could summon one of their associates or be summoned by a loud audible broadcast from the device regardless of whether the devices was on or off. All around the recipients could hear the broadcast. It was more like a 2-way radio and the typical message was, **** please pickup," because the real message could not be broadcast over the air-- it could be heard only by the really important people.

These devices also contained all of the features of the pagers they had replaced, and added others like photo taking capabilities and music and video streaming. And they were really good for commerce as band- width had to be increased, at a price.  And as with the pagers, there were pretenders who received grocery lists and sports scores and the like.  And the cell phones continued to improve, providing the internet and gaming and live poker. Before long one could watch their favorite, TV show, or rent the latest movie, or pay bills or manage their bank accounts. And supplemental keyboards were made available to limit the rise in carpel tunnel syndrome.  And their use increased with social networking websites such as MySpace and FaceBook and Graig’s List, and the like. And then there was Skype allowing full video phone capabilities from phone or PC.  We began to read articles about our favorite stars from magazine content posted on the web, and then there were web magazines and news organizations that provided all that we previously subscribed to newspapers for – and all this was provided by the major newspapers!

And whatever happened was broadcast immediately and again and again and again, etc. No matter how unimportant. And this internet increased in importance and size and fortunes were made with the rise and fall of major search engines, each repeating what was provided by the other and adding more.

And then came twitter that allowed us to follow the creations under the guise of following our favorite celebrities. And no one ever wondered why it was important to know what color of socks Aston Kutcher is wearing today or what Paula Abdul is thinking through as she plans her next career move. We were all kept up, and appreciated it. And we soon had our own facebook and MySpace and twitter accounts. And we tweeted about

the color of our socks

and what we thought about

what she said when she found out

what he did and why

he did it when she called her friend to say

that today and not tomorrow,

she too would wear red socks

for the first time this week.

And that is how we became captives; hunting down our victors, demanding that they take and hold our attention, needing to know all that they thought we should know or try to know least we find time to know Him.

/ SS