Saturday 7 December 2019

Indulging voyeurism is an iPleasure

Ciara Ferguson

What with smartphones, e-readers, iPads, iPods, texting, LinkedIn, and, of course, Facebook, it's hard work making life easier. And I'm not sure if all this instant-accessibility lark is such a good idea. I mean, whatever happened to "gone fishing".

Speaking of which, fishing was one of the reasons I joined Facebook -- spying on Mr C in the early days, that is (and needless to say, it was a bad idea, given that we were in Shanghai, taking time apart), and because I'm nosy and I don't like to think I'm missing anything. Of course, now I realise I wouldn't have been missing anything.

Indeed, it's all going horribly wrong, with Facebook serving as plain evidence of the glaring blanks in my memory that have apparently resulted in "friends" who I don't really know at all (no offence mate). I just say yes to everyone because I don't like to say no. But it seems my misspent youth (and 20s ... and 30s ... and, er, 40s) has meant crossing paths with quite a few people who, well ... who are you anyway?

Ah, just kidding. There's no getting away from it, and on a good day Facebook means I can indulge my voyeurism. All those years of keeping it in check, wasted. I am just like my grandmother, who used to pry open letters with the kettle, read and reseal. Now even my "real life" friends are at it.

Recently, one of them was fiddling interminably with her iPhone to the point where I feared she was having a pre-senior moment (junior if you like), until she explained that she was addicted to Angry Birds. I thought this must be a new sitcom, like an alternative Mad Men for ladies (Angry Birds n'all) and not an interactive game with which you can virtually while away your life. Or, indeed, while away your virtual life.

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