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CCFB News» March 2018

Downwind by Bob Rohrer, CAE, FBCM, Manager

03/01/2018 @ 7:00 am | By Linda Tobias

Downwind

by Bob Rohrer

“Just Text Me… Later”

 

In 2018, I will “celebrate” the nine-year anniversary of sending my very first text message.  Cake, noisemakers, balloons, and games please… Yes, I was a late comer to this phone phenomenon that nearly everyone takes for granted today. Shockingly, I really have no desire to make up for lost time.  Even my father, the Farmer, sends text messages nowadays...pigs now fly.

 

So, is the world a better place with texting? My children prefer text communication, so this is one way that I can “speak” with them. On the negative side, they may only respond when they get around to it or need something.  It is harder to lecture through this medium…

 

The phone that I learned to text on was a flip phone (see pictured). I found the old phone in a file cabinet the other day… Remember when a smaller, sleeker phone was what it was all about?

You’ll remember that the process of sending a simple text message was quite a chore when we only had 10 number buttons…

 

Let me repeat that - I composed a message by repeatedly clicking various numbers on the phone (And this little exercise of writing this article helped me remember what a chore that was!) Many times, I lost focus half way through the process of sending a message.  Anyone else remember those days? Anyone else still composing text messages using the numbers pad?

 

Now to send a text message, I simply click on the microphone icon and start speaking… The phone magically hears my voice and does the typing for me. I’m not sure how it works, but what a relief! I have learned that I should check the text before clicking “send” … What I say and what the phone types into the text message can be two distinctly different and sometimes funny (or offensive) things. This seems like a good time to apologize to the many family members, friends and random strangers to whom I have sent errant, confusing, appalling, garbled and/or incoherent messages.

 

I get that there is a constant temptation to text while driving. All you need to do is click on a button and start talking.  I see so many drivers with their heads and necks slanted downward while driving, looking at their phones.  Are these distracted drivers busily reading and responding to text messages and emails? I see it everywhere…on the interstate, highways, streets, stop signs, parking lots, turn lanes, rearview mirrors...Yikes! Isn’t texting while driving against the law?

The Illinois Farm Bureau has just come out with a campaign (see the ad below) in an effort to reduce the distracted driving habits that relate to the urge to text. Would you look at those stats, please?

 

Primarily, the issue is texting when driving an automobile or a truck. However, I see some other potential areas of concerns…

                Texting while driving a tractor on the highway… Not a good plan

                Texting with earbuds blasting while crossing the street…

                Texting while riding a bicycle…

                Texting while walking on the railroad tracks…

                Texting while cutting down a tree using a chainsaw…

                Texting while skiing…

                Texting while push mowing the lawn…

                Texting while using a circular saw…

                Texting while shaving with a straight edge…

                Texting while coaching 3rd base…

                Texting while on the toilet…all not a good plan!

 

 There are enough dangerous situations out there, people…let’s stop trying to multi-task everything with a phone stuck in our hand. One simple text message while driving (and other activities) can go very bad and change the course of your life while ruining the lives of so many.  Stop it!

 

PS. We have a supply of car window clings that are available for members that want to spread the “U Text, U Wreck” message…give us a call at 708-354-3276 if you are interested.