I find myself reading tons of emails and messages every day because, well, I’m a geek and I work on the Internet and my PC all day. People ask if I get sick of being alone most of the day, but most days I’m actually kinda thankful to not have to interact with anyone. I fear that the world’s population is being dumbed down. I see things from the movie Idiocracy (which really wasn’t all that great) becoming more realistic…and I’m truly scared. If you haven’t seen the movie, here’s a little glimpse.
Something that really worries me about the generation currently coming into control, is that they don’t seem to know how to write in full sentences, with real words and punctuation. Yes, I am guilty of taking typing shortcuts while chatting and writing emails to close friends. I don’t always use proper capitalization but I do follow just about every other rule. It generally doesn’t take that much longer…especially when you’ve been typing daily for over 10 years (man, I CANNOT believe I am old enough to say something like that!) Plus most email systems and even browsers (like Firefox) have spell check built in so why not pause and think, “OK, that word just got underlined with a red squiggle…what could that mean??”
Why are there people who write to me with business-related questions who don’t use real sentences? You want to spam my blog to direct traffic to yours and don’t take the time to write a complete sentence – that’s one thing…but contacting me via my business email? Come on. I even go to great lengths to write coherently in German to people and my grammar sucks…but I’m pretty sure it’s better than these emails I get where someone strings together a few words from 2-3 sentences and I have to decipher what I think it means. It’s almost like trying to speak with cave men. “Me try place order no get what you next” HUH??
Maybe I should be blaming it on email services and the world wide web which are eating pieces of text out of the emails as they get sent through cyberspace. I hate to think that people are just too lazy to take a few extra seconds to type coherent thoughts. But the other alternative is that they are too dumb to know any better – and I just can’t bear to face that thought.
Not only can people not write, but they also seem to be having trouble with thinking. While driving, shopping or doing any number of other things, they just shut off. You’re cruising along in your car and the person in front of you suddenly realizes they wanted to turn a few blocks back. What do they do? Slam on the breaks and frantically search for the first place to turn off. They’re in the middle of the road, blocking everyone. How about driving a bit further, looking around, finding some place to turn off, following basic traffic rules and not causing a 10-car pile up in the process?
OR, they do something which I hate even more. We have a problem with aggressive drivers here…and I know U.S. drivers are no strangers to road rage either. Here speed is a big factor because they will come flying up behind you on the Autobahn (highway) doing about 150 MPH…and tailgate you until you move. But there are also the people who pull out in front of you doing 50 MPH while you’re doing 150 MPH on an otherwise clear road. WHY??? Turning on your blinker does not give you the right of way, people! Nor does it give you a right to be a retard. Basic physics says you are going to be eaten alive if the guy flying up behind you is not prepared for you to be a moron. But since something like 60% of people surveyed a while back think turning on your blinker gives you the right of way, I guess it’s no wonder. And this in a country where people spend months and thousands of dollars to get a license!
But even better than that are the idiot people who never use their turn signals (and seem to think blinkers aren’t even a feature available on their car) and those who drive without realizing there are any other cars on the road at all!! These people who ignore all other people on the road, I want to give them the benefit of the doubt and assume that they are just self-absorbed. It seems a much nicer thought to believe that when they purposely prevent you from joining the flow of traffic, it is because they didn’t see you; not because they are colossal A*%H=?#S! (Sorry, I try to keep this blog PG but there is just not much other way to describe them.)
Imagine this: You are sitting in your driveway or a parking lot and want to pull out onto the road. Traffic lines up in front of you to wait for a stop light and you think, “Great, here’s my chance.” But the cars continue to steam past you, slowly filling up all the space into which you can turn, until there is a solid line of cars blocking you in. The guy sitting in his car on the road directly in front of you never glances in your direction and it’s almost as if you’re not even there! The light turns green, the cars move forward and still no one will brake to let you in. So you end up sitting there for 5 minutes until finally some slow moving car gives you enough space to jump in there and you hope he doesn’t decide to speed up to try to cut you off…otherwise, you might have to call in sick to work because no one is going to let you out!
People do this while shopping also. But there it’s often coupled with the zombie march where you wonder what they might have ingested on the way into the store and where you might be able to buy some of that, assuming it makes you happy in this state of oblivion. This is especially bad in stores like IKEA. The masses trudge along behind their cart, following the little path on the floor from section to section, not really seeming to have a goal for being there but you can be damn sure that if you have somewhere to get to and just want to get in and get out, every single zombie in that store is going to get in your way before you exit the store…at least once! It’s almost like your own personal video game. Maybe we could get them to hand out laser tag guns for people that look like they have above average intelligence…at least then it could be fun. And if you shoot the zombies, they just move aside. Or they could explode, Resident Evil-style. That works also.
Unfortunately, we’ll be dealing with some of the insane drivers today because Stefan and I will be going to visit his parents for the weekend. We’ve got about 4-5 hours of driving ahead of us and, God willing, we’ll make it there without hitting any major traffic jams. It’s almost impossible to not hit any traffic here in Germany because there are far too many cars on the road…but if we can make it out of Frankfurt in less than an hour, it will already be a good sign. And if anyone tries to mess with us, we’ll just let Ayla stick her head out the window and drool on their car. That stuff is like super glue so they won’t get too much further after that.0