June 29, 2015 by phicks2012
Sometimes Life(tm) gives us lemons that just refuse to be easily converted into lemonade. Actually, sometimes Life hurls those lemons at us with the speed and force of a Major League pitcher, and we feel as though we were trying to fend them off with a Nerf-bat. At such times we may need a friend to talk to who doesn’t mind listening, and sympathizing, and consoling, and maybe even offering to kick Life’s butt for us. Friends like that ROCK!
Nowadays, with the overwhelming presence of Twitter, Social Media, Email, and Cell Phones, one would think that finding someone to talk to at such times would be EASY, right? Obviously, you can post to social media and get responses from nut-jobs willing to be offended on your behalf about nearly anything! I mean, just type a message and there they are!!! But I’ve discovered that unless we want to vent to total strangers and have our innermost frustrations consigned forever to the web it’s actually harder than it used to be to make contact with real people — folks that we actually know — one-on-one.
Because of annoyance calls, just about EVERYone screens their calls these days. Try calling a friend either by land-line or cell phone and you more often than not will get their voicemail box, which is often full and not accepting any new messages. Some people ALLOW their voicemail boxes to fill up just so they won’t NEED to check them, and some don’t know (or care) HOW to check them — but either way a legitimate caller is often pretty much screwed, and even if you CAN leave a message the return call might not come for a WEEK. So how, I ask petulantly and whine contentiously, is THAT fair?
Try emailing, and you have to wait for them to check their email, because people aren’t checking that as regularly anymore now that they have Facebook and other social media platforms. They might not see your email for DAYS, and by that time you’ve probably decided just to give up on talking to somebody and instead to drink yourself into temporary oblivion or just commit murder and hide the body alone. Right?
Try messaging on Facebook and they aren’t there either, because (after all) who really LIVES on social media other than people who really have no real lives at all? If they ARE on-line and logged-in, the chances are good that they’re also conducting chats with half a dozen other people or that they (like many people) simply have Facebook running in the background (like I do right now) while working on something else, and check in and out only occasionally. Yep, and by the time they click on the link to check their personal messages, yours has scrolled down well past visibility and into extinction.
Twitter allows us to express heated or glowing opinions about subjects we generally don’t understand at all, or about which anyone with intelligence and taste could care less, but who really “follows” Twitter 24/7? Not anyone I personally know. They all have actual lives, and how can you properly VENT in something like 140 characters, even if you abbreviate?
Texting? Nah!! See above!!
I have friends who work all day dealing with phone calls and computers and have about ZERO interest in dealing with EITHER once they get off work. They don’t really WANT to talk to anyone at ALL once they escape to the safety of home, and who can really blame them? Not me, because there are times when I don’t want to talk to anyone EITHER.
I also have friends who, in order to make ends meet, have pay-by-the-minute cell phone accounts, and so cannot afford to spend much time in conversation even if they would LIKE to.
So, how do you reach people when you need to talk? Do you drop by their homes unannounced — or do you just give the Hell up and call a Crisis Line or go on http://www.drphil.com — neither one of which is likely to give you any satisfaction?
I’ve about decided that, speaking purely for myself, I need to have a BFF who actually answers phone calls, lives next door, and/or has a degree in psychology they’re just DYING to USE and a pair of major butt-kicking boots.
But most of the time when Life needs a Butt-Kicking, I’ve pretty much decided that we probably need to do most of it ourselves. We just need to put on our own kick-ass boots — the ones with the really heavy soles and steel toes — and go to it — and then tell our friends about it later, if we can reach them. 😉