Thursday, May 2, 2013

Is winter over?

I took a chance yesterday, 1 May, and took the snow-blower off the tractor.

Five hundred miles to the west, in a band that stretches from Arkansas up through the Dakotas and Minnesota and into Canada, there's a snow-storm heading in this general direction.

Nevertheless, it was a beautiful summer day here. We took the opportunity to spend a couple of hours on a restaurant patio in town. Beer and wings on a patio in the bright afternoon sunshine, a patio that was under snow and windswept by blizzard conditions barely two weeks ago.

And we were far from being the only folks in the mood to celebrate the end of winter. The patio was packed.

But here's the thing that struck me. Most of the people on the patio were more engrossed by their smart-phones than by the company at their table. Couples are celebrating the first rays of spring sun by sitting on a patio, each with phone in hand, constantly checking whatever important stuff it is that totally unimportant people have to check on their phones. Constantly.

I know they are unimportant people because they are sitting on the same patio as me. I don't hang with important people.

Entire families were on that patio, every family member deeply into their 2X2 inch screen, with an occasional acknowledgement of their table-mates, but for the most part far more interested in what those screens were showing them.

There was even a guy with one of those magical phones strapped to his ear. You have to have a lot of faith in the purveyors of technology to walk around all day with a cell-phone strapped to the side of your brain. Yes, I know that most of the phone-company research conclusively concludes that there is no conclusive link between radio waves and brain cancer, but still....

If they can't be counted on to get your monthly bill straight, how can you count on their scientific research?

But no matter.

Spring has sprung.

At least for today.

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