Blaise Tapp: Out of hand mobile phone obsession

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As a self diagnosed day dreamer, I spend an awful lot of time thinking about nonsense.

This is fine for greasy haired teenagers who only have to worry about not missing the bus to college but really isn’t ok for 41-year-old greasy haired middle managers with two kids.

MOBILE PHONES: 95% of British households are believed to own one.

MOBILE PHONES: 95% of British households are believed to own one.

My mind has long been full of useless nonsense, which is jolly handy in pub quizzes but is a bit of drawback when it comes to following instructions for assembling a flatpacked bed.

Like many daydreamers I often tackle the big issues such as what would I do if I was five-years-old for a day or what is the best way to cook black pudding, boiled or fried?

But nowadays the goldfish amongst us have something else to keep us permanently distracted — our mobile phones.

For the vast majority of those living in the developed world, our entire lives are contained inside these slimline ball and chains as they act as a diary, a newsfeed, a mini tv and, most importantly, our social network.

Show me somebody who says that they can go more than a couple of hours without looking at their phone and I will show you a liar.

There have been various studies carried out into mobile phone usage but the one that stands out is the one which suggests that the average Brit looks at their phone 28 times a day or 10,000 times a year.

Nearly everybody in the country owns a mobile phone: 95 per cent of British households are believed to have one and I should imagine that those who shun them are old enough not only to remember ration books but to recall the last time Coronation Street wasn’t a complete load of irrelevant cobblers.

There is no doubting the benefits of mobile technology — gone are the days when you would arrange to meet a pal at a fixed time as nowadays you can give them real time updates on your progress via Snapchat, WhatsApp, text or, if you are still living in 2001, you can phone them.

But are we turning into a generation of phone obsessed zombies? There are many out there who think we are and there are fears that lives are being put at risk because of this obsession. In America, where else?, there has been an increase in the number of pedestrian deaths with one official report suggesting that mobile phones were a factor. That’s right, people are so engrossed in what is on their small screens that they are walking in front of traffic.

This is becoming such a problem that authorities across the world are introducing innovations such as red and green into the pavement, in the hope that this will catch the attention of distracted mobile phone users.

This may sound all rather far fetched but we are all an accident waiting to happen. How many times have you had a near miss of some description because you were reading an urgent message from the boss or watching a cat video?

In our house all sorts of chaos unfolds when I choose 
to ‘quickly’ check Twitter while I should really be doing bedtime.

We have allowed our lives to be dictated to by technology and it is up to us to show some will power and leave our phones alone — at least until we are in the safety of our own homes.