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By , Charlotte, NC
When it comes to most things in life, I love tradition. I'm big on old-school family values like self-control, respect, chivalry, diligence, perseverance, and courtesy. Technology makes me sad because it causes people to forgo these virtues in exchange for convenience. TV, iPods, computer, and cell phones just make us fat and lazy. I don't think we should get rid of all technology, just that we should wean ourselves to be less dependent on it, and less absorbed within it.

The TV is diminishing our real skill value. Instead of going outside to play catch or tag or chalk up the driveway, so many kids just sit on the couch playing xbox, eyes glued to the tube. If you spend three hours at a time blasting aliens on your TV, you are wasting your life. Go into the garage get some wood, build a sword, then kill aliens around your house (WARNING: some imagination required). Play matchbox cars, not Grand Theft Auto. The difference: one is real. But I guess it's not reality that I'm set on because I love imagination. I just want you off that TV.

The wii is a perfect example. In the good old days people went to the tennis courts to play tennis, to the bowling alley to bowl, and to the golf course to golf. Now they can do all these things in front of the TV with virtual rackets, bowling balls, and golf clubs. But this begs the question, why in the world would you want to swing a remote around in front of your TV like an idiot when you could actually be playing a real game with real people in the real world? Why does every facet of life have to revolve around a screen?

And movies in cars? Whatever happened to watching the fields and looking for cows, talking with your buddies? For goodness sake, suburbans come with a movie screen for each seat! If you must watch a movie, at least share the experience with your siblings. What better way to alienate a kid from life as we know it than to point his head at his own little screen and strap headphones over his ears. BAM – all senses occupied.

Ipods, too, lock people in their own individual world, listening to their own music or watching their own private movie. So much for movies as a social activity. Ever talk to someone with their head in their ipod? You know part of them isn't paying attention to you. One night all my friends were playing poker around the table except for Grant. Grant was watching an episode of The Office to himself, totally oblivious to our jokes and laughs. I leaned over and politely asked, “Is that more entertaining than our game?”

Facebook: the place where insecure people broadcast their insecurity, the place where people show that they have no life. “Which Disney character are you most like,” who cares? Wake up and smell the roses people (not the PNG version), get off the computer and do something. Stop wasting time on your butt accomplishing nothing when you could be on your butt mastering a Rubix cube or actually chatting with someone over lunch. I'm not saying that Facebook is inherently bad; I use it myself to keep up with out-of-state friends. I just think that the majority of Facebook junkies twist it for their lazy purposes of avoiding reality.

But you know what peeves me the most? Texting. In the middle of a conversation with me, this kid whips out his Envy3 and starts texting. Can't you wait until I'm done talking to you, or has your attention span completely dissolved? The worst is when people text in a movie theater. Don't you have the self control to wait until the movie's over.

Now that my tirade is almost finished, what is the solution for this rampage of laziness? Go for a walk. Read a book – this will sharpen your wits and stimulate creativity. Join a football team or take saxophone. Put down your plastic Guitar Hero toy and use that time to actually learn guitar. Do real things. Yes, these things take hard work, dedication, and patience, but that's what life is made of. Life is not instant gratification. Bored without Halo or your iTouch? Go to your garage again and get a tennis ball. There is an endless amount of games you can play with just one tennis ball and some imagination (key ingredient: a friend).





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