Dis-Connect

One weekend before Halloween there was the Zombie Walk at City Hall in downtown Toronto. I went to Zombie-watch but was able to get free makeup so I joined the fun. It was unclear when the walk was so I did my own Zombie Walk around the block. Most people didn’t know what was going on that day so I had the element of surprise and ghoul on my side :) I had a lot of fun! I was able to scare a lot of people with my sneaky ways :-D What surprised me is when people were either so intent on their phones or talking to the person they were with or looking ahead as they walked that they Didn’t Even Notice Me. This is how I looked.

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Yes, some people actually paid me no mind.

I sometimes waved instead of trying to eat brains, with this hand.

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The other side looks just as ‘bloody’. When people looked up from their body attachment…

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…they either smiled or waved back but didn’t seem to notice the ‘blood’ on my hand. Sometimes my hand is all they saw, or should I say didn’t see as the ‘blood’ didn’t phase them.

Electronic toys are here for good, no matter the form they take. Social media will forever remain a part of our world, no matter how it evolves. But we have the choice of how much it becomes integrated into our lives. Are you able to turn off the TV, turn off the computer or tablet, put your phone down and just go for a walk or even leave the house for the day? Our idea of ‘I need it’ is like a woman’s purse. Our purses keep getting bigger yet are always full of stuff. The bigger the purse the more stuff we put in it. We don’t need most of that stuff. Men get by with wallets (or did before the man bag became a fashion accessory) . Our purses contain wallets as well as so much more. But we feel that we need all of that stuff. Our idea of ‘need’ is becoming skewered.

Toronto is a large, multi-cultural city with a lot of people. Yet many times I see people on their phones, talking or texting, ignoring all the people around them.

When do we decide to be friendly with people and be open to making friends, or even just having a conversation, and other times (the majority) decide we’ll only talk or text with the people we already know. None of us came into this world having friends, we only came into this world having family (or did, if we’re lucky). We actually made friends at some point, we never just had friends. When do we decide that those people are the only friends we’ll make? When do we become resistant to adding to that friend base? The opportunity is always there but it can take things such as a new school, a new job, or a new home to force us to reach out and ‘talk to strangers’. When we talk to enough strangers we make acquaintances and friends. At the very least we improve someone’s day by being friendly.

We have this feeling of separation from other humans. We see differences, real or imagined. There is so much of the Us vs Them mentality. We group people based on skin colour, religious beliefs, ethnicity, even by where they live. When we talk to someone new, even if by accident, what do we notice? We notice similarities. Shared interests, sense of humour, political beliefs, or even travel destinations. We have the same fears. We all cry. We all get hurt. We all want to love and be loved. We all want to be accepted. We all want respect.

We disconnect ourselves from each other, cut ourselves off from each other. We can be surrounded by a sea of people and will either ignore everyone and everything, listening to music and/or playing games, or texting with a few select people that we’ve allowed into our world.

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Once I had a conversation with someone who never took their oversized earphones off, I had no idea if the music was still playing or not. It was very distracting, it felt like if I got boring they could turn their music back on and I would never know.

We all want to be loved, appreciated, respected….

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Technology is created to improve our lives and to help us connect. It’s up to each of us whether it hits the mark or not.

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2 thoughts on “Dis-Connect

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