This can’t be life

Last Saturday, the best thing happened to me while I was in the club—my phone died. After several failed attempts at trying to revive it, I pocketed the mobile device and decided to indulge in the events of the evening. I had a blast, even without “tweeting” about it.

But let me back up.

Before I even left the house, I tweeted my whereabouts for the evening.  When I got there, I tweeted who I was meeting up with and how many shots I needed to take to catch up. And naturally, as the night progressed, my drink count needed to be well documented for my entire timeline to see—so I tweeted that as well.

Of course I took a break from Twitter for a few “jooks” here and a couple of “dougies” there, but for the most part, until it died, I was locked onto my phone.

It’s sad, but as members of this social network generation, most of us have forgotten how to live in the moment. We spend half of our days in front of a computer screen or on our phones, neglecting the people standing right next to us. We’ve created virtual lives online while becoming anti-social in real life.

This, my friends, is how we socialize now. No matter what’s going on, major or minor, there’s a sense of “necessity” to let the entire Internet know what we’re doing at every moment of our lives. We have to take pictures on road trips to Panama City and put them in a Facebook album. We have to tweet about how “epic” that burrito from El Jalisco’s was, the reason, simply being, because we have the technology to do so.

In 2010, you can do anything on your cell phone—receive emails, take pictures, record video, log onto social networks, change T.V. channels and, if you’re old-school, make a phone call.

Now I’ll admit I check my Facebook status and Twitter updates on my phone often, so much so that I could probably tell you someone’s business on Twitter before I could remember the date. But it’s not my fault. I can’t help that there’s a five-inch computer in my pocket 24/7. Blame Darwin for evolution—or at least Steve Jobs.

Back when I was flipping open my Motorola Razr, my social network addiction was restricted to computer screens. Now I can get my fix anywhere I go, which isn’t always a good thing.

To the chagrin of my professors, when I’m not engaged in side conversation or asleep in the front row, most of my time is spent tweeting about how ready I am for class to be over.

It’s not to be rude—I just happen to relate to the hundreds of people tweeting the same exact thing about their classes more than I do whatever my professor is lecturing about. Cell phones have become the bridge to our Terabithia, our own personal paradise—social networks.

With the innovation of what is now known as “smart phones,” cell phones have literally become mini laptops.

According to a Nielson survey, by the end of 2011, 1 in every 2 Americans will own a smart phone. Applications allowing users to keep up with sports scores, view Youtube videos and log onto Facebook are much more entertaining than real life, right? It would seem so. Our generation would rather live a self-imposed Truman Burbank lifestyle, broadcasting our every move, instead of simply living life.

And although I enjoy these sites, there are some things I feel can be done without them—such as church.

Of all the places you would think people would give their undivided attention, church should be at the top of the list. However, too often do I see someone tweet about the late arrival of a classmate at 11 a.m. service or how sister Lewis really didn’t have any business trying to hit that note during her solo.

By 2020, people will be making marriage proposals over Skype, taking “twitpics” during childbirths and “Ustreaming” baptisms.

To quote Jay-Z, “This can’t be life.”

There’s something irreplaceable about a face-to-face conversation with another human being.  You get an accurate and genuine feel for who they are. On Twitter, you only get a brief summary in 140 characters or less.

Online, we act like the best of friends when we honestly know nothing about the people we talk to everyday on these websites. People will post a comment on someone’s wall or retweet a funny tweet, but won’t say a single word to that person when they walk past them on campus. Is that the new definition of friendship? Which life are we really living? Our generation created this virtual world and now, sadly, we’re hiding behind it.