It seems for kids these days it’s “like” all about constant contact; being permanently in contact with the outside world. They are being force fed an information stream that shapes how they live their lives and dictates what they do and shapes the decisions they make.
It used to be that you’d only pick up the phone if you wanted to talk to someone who was out of town or at least not within walking distance. Growing up in England I remember when each call, even local calls across the road, had to be paid for. My Dad wouldn’t let us use the phone to call a friend to see if they wanted to head up to the park to play footy (soccer), we had to go and bang on their door and wake the whole family up. My Mum used it the most, usually to chat to one of her friends across the street for hours on end. Dad’s rules didn’t apply to Mum.
As a young adult I flew the nest and decided to travel around the world. I had a feeling that there was more to life than living in Liverpool - notwithstanding the great city that it is. In those days, international calls would cost upwards of a dollar a minute and so were always too expensive to use unless it was an emergency. I’m often reminded of this fact each time my parents recount the time I placed a collect call from Kathmandu to let my parents know that I had returned safely from a trek up in the Annapurna mountain range.
“That call cost me thirty five pounds when the bill came and when I called back to reach you all the guy at the hostel in Kathmandu wanted to talk about was what the bloody weather was like in England!!” “Well at least I wasn't calling from across the street and you've got good mileage out of the story Dad ” is my standard reply.
Fortunately for my Dad’s bank balance, most of my communication was in the form letter writing and not so long ago my Mum compiled all the letters I’d written to her from my travels and gave them back to me as a reminder of my times abroad. I treasure them.
Nowadays lives are organized by a hand held device. There are no hard copies being made of “selfies”. No letters from college bound kids off on an adventure being written to Mum back home to keep, to treasure, to pass on. No sepia fading postcards send from some exotic location –who does that these days? Nope, as a friend of mine once said “it’s all on the electric”.
As a parent the best app on the phone is the “Take Away” app. If my kid steps out of line the phone is gone until the bedroom is tidied. If there’s a sibling cat fight taking place over who’s wearing whose jeans or blouse - the phones are temporarily muted until the issue is resolved. But as convenient as it is to use the phone as a disciplinary tool I still think my kids are too engrossed with their heads buried scanning that moment’s twitter feed or Instagram shot. Gary Turk’s poem said it best if you can spare 5 minutes, it’s worth the watch and worth sharing with your kids.
Which brings me to what this blog post is all about – finally, I hear you say.
As an owner of an orthopedic shoe company, the calls, emails, letters that we get that I enjoy the most are the ones that tell us how our footwear has helped a customer achieve their goal or how they’ve been able travel to their dream destination, the vacation they thought they’d never be able to take.
So I’m pleased to announce that we’ve created a Pedors customer wall on our website so that stories can be shared and help inspire others to chase their dreams and goals. Feel free to contact us via email from your hand held device and tell us your “Pedors Story” but what we’d really like to get is a hand written letter or a postcard :)