|"Nooo, I DO NOT have a mobile number..."|
Before this turns into too much of an essay I should explain the series of events that has led to this post. It all began the other week when I attempted to fill out an online form for something or other (I think it was a job application). For the first few fields all was going well until I got to the box marked "Telephone (Mobile)". Now up 'til this point I had always been able to bypass the request for a mobile number and simply move on. Except this time a whole load of red warning signs and highlighted instructions appeared upon my pressing "Submit". For perhaps only the second time in my experience, a mobile telephone number was a "required field"(!).
|"He doesn't have a mobile number?!"|
I suppose when there are 62½ million of the things in the country, with 85% of the population in thrall to them and the "average person" owning two of the confounded machines the odds are stacked heavily against the likes of Tups and me, leading to the aforementioned conclusion on the part of most people/forms. Still, it is dashed frustrating for those of us who get by perfectly well without to encounter this presumptive attitude.
|"People walking around with 'phones stuck to their heads..."|
How long before it becomes impossible for those of us sans mobile 'phone to get by on a day-to-day basis? Already we are seeing the advent of "pay by mobile" in certain high street shops and car parks. Will mandatory mobile numbers beget mandatory mobile 'phones, perhaps? In a related aspect, many adverts and competitions seen on television are increasingly becoming accessible only for those with a Farcebook account. Again, I do not have one. I almost feel marginalised!
I expect I'm preaching to the converted here and I'm sure many readers who do have mobile telephones use them sensibly and recognise them for the occasionally-useful tools they can be. Nor am I suggesting we all go back to tin cans and string; I've mentioned in the past how I like to see (and use!) modern technology fused with vintage æsthetics but I'd also like to see it married to certain vintage values and a healthy, balanced lifestyle. Part of that should be the acceptance - the understanding - that mobile telephones are not the be-all and end-all of things and are (and should remain) optional.
Until then, my stock response of "I don't own a mobile telephone" is becoming ever more long-suffering and the numberpad on my keyboard more frequently employed.