We’ve probably all seen that meme where teenagers are busy texting on their cellphones and seem oblivious to their surroundings. Or perhaps a scene from a TV show or movie where the family is seated at the dinner table and one of the adults tell the teens to put their phones away.
Truth is, teenagers don’t need cellphones to ignore their families. For generation teens have found ways to tune out adults.
But it isn’t just teens. It’s the adult in the room who is also focused on his or her cellphone. Yet what we seem to forget, before Mom or Dad was surfing the internet on their phone, they often had something else in their hands taking their attention—like a newspaper, magazine or book. I remember as a kid being so annoyed because my mother always seemed to have her nose buried in a book.
What I am trying to say here—while some things change, they also remain the same.
Now let’s move onto the original intent of this post: What is good about the Internet Age?
I thought about this topic as I sat on my recliner paying my monthly bills—online. I used to loath paying bills. I’m not talking about the money aspect of bill paying—I am talking about the process.
In the old days bill paying required bringing out the checkbook. Writing checks. Stuffing envelopes with the bill voucher and check. Writing my return address on the envelope or using a return address sticker. If a bill didn’t include a return envelope there were envelopes to address. Stamps to buy. Stamps to stick on envelopes. Mail to the post office (because we are told it is too dangerous to leave signed checks sitting unattended in the mailbox.) This was a task you couldn’t do from the recliner. It required sitting at the kitchen table or a desk.
But today, my bills are payed with a few clicks—organized neatly on my bank website. If I want, I can even set some to automatically pay. Online banking saves me hours each month.
Then there is grocery shopping. Since the grocery store I prefer shopping at began offering pickup and delivery service, I simply sit comfortably on my recliner with my laptop preparing my grocery list. I often do this while watching television at night.
Yet, instead of writing a list to take with me to the grocery store, I enter my list directly on the grocery store website. They even make it easy for me—my favorite products are already organized so I just have to click and say how many.
We don’t have them deliver—hubby picks the groceries up each week. All he has to do is pull into the assigned parking space, call them on the cellphone, and they bring the groceries to him and THEY load up the car!
While we haven’t tried the delivery, it is nice to know that when that time comes when we can no longer drive, they will bring us our groceries for a nominal fee.
These are just two examples—banking and grocery shopping—that show how the internet has helped free up hours so we can do other things.
And the fact is, time is probably one of the most precious commodities.