Sunday, June 27, 2010
Sh*t I Don't Understand: Bluetooth
Ever wonder why, whenever you see or hear stories of alien visits to Earth, these aliens never stay? I'll tell you why. Because the people on our cozy planet have a unique ability to be f*ing unbearable at the drop of a hat, or, in the case of our topic for today, the clip of a device to an ear. Like we've said several times in this space, you give the general public some new freedom or convenience (via technology or however), and that proverbial inch turns into a proverbial yard faster than you can download a Lady Gaga ring tone. Such is my disdain for the Bluetooth.
I get how the Bluetooth is supposed to be such a life saver when it comes to people talking on phones while driving, but even that postulate is debatable. The "hands-free" aspect still doesn't eliminate the fact that you're engaging in an outside activity while operating a 3,000+-lb moving machine at the same time. But my real issue with the Bluetooth is when people choose to use the things outside of the car, whether they're at work or just walking around in public. Is it me, or is this just douchebaggery to the umpteenth degree? It's bad enough I have to be subjected to the crap you insist on putting into my face when you're actually in the car, but now I'm privy to your phone conversations when all I'm trying to do is walk from Point A to Point B? You think no one will mind listening to your pointless, self-important blabbering? I mind, man. The Dude minds.
I wonder what the thought process is that leads to a person deciding they should walk around with one of these things. I can't be certain, but I think the following is a good stab at it:
"Do you have any idea how important I am and how valuable every second of my day is? Not only must I be on the phone for 75% of my waking hours, but reaching into a pocket to make or receive a call is simply out of the question! I need this bad boy clipped to my ear at all times, otherwise the rest of the world is way too far away from me!"
Talking on a cell phone in public can be as harmless or as annoying as you choose to make it. But when talking on a Bluetooth, you feel like you have to yell into the thing to be heard on the other end. So there you are, in a public place while everyone else is trying to just go about their lives, speaking with your voice at "the band just went on at the bar" volume, most likely smacking away at some mundane conversation about where you're going for dinner that night or the yardwork you plan on making your husband do tomorrow. Now, I have some unfortunate news for you if you're one of these people: nobody gives a damn about your goings-on. Nobody. You are not interesting, and even if you are interesting, talking on your Bluetooth about the time you climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro is obnoxious nonetheless.
I laugh to myself whenever caught in a situation where I'm standing in the vicinity of a BlueDouche and, not having seen the person to know that they're talking on a phone, I get the impression they're talking to me. One time I was in front of a Cherry Hill soccer mom in line at the food store, and it sounded like she was questioning every item I was buying. I place the Red Bull on the counter and hear "no, I don't think so." I put the oatmeal up there and hear "I just don't think that's a good idea." At that point I had to turn around and say "excuse me?" only to get the patented "startled/perturbed look and smartass point to the centipede on your ear to indicate you're in the midst of a phone conversation" reaction from the Queen of Suburbia yapping on her Bluetooth about letting her kids go out that night. Or at least that's what I gathered from her conversation, since she continued to yap away for the remainder of my time standing 3 feet away from her.
Here's my thing - I don't care how far our technology goes, 2 out of 3 conversations we have during the course of a day can afford to wait. Just because you can talk to a person with the touch of a button doesn't mean you need to be talking to that person at that given moment, especially when activities of normal existence are consuming you. And most of the time, if the phone call you are about to make or receive is really that important or necessary, then you shouldn't be be trying to squeeze the call in while you're in the gym locker room, the post office, or some other transient state.