Up until recently, I was a big supporter of technology. I love computers, smart phones, video games, instant messaging, blogs, iPad and other tablets...If there is a screen and buttons that I can touch, I love it.
Ok, well, I still love my xbox.
I don't want my cell phone anymore. I'm tired of being texted constantly, at all hours of the day. It was partly my fault for answering, but I really need to put my foot down on this. My schedule was one that we had agreed upon prior to being offered the position, and was a stipulation I was very clear about keeping. I can understand if this job was one that included an "on-call" type of schedule, or if I was working in something drastic like suicide prevention, but it's not.
Some of the ones I get are like these:
"Mingle, can you ask Mark to do xyz"
"Do I need to send xyz?"
"When is xyz due?"
"Does Mark know where to fax xyz to?"
"What other forms do I need?"
"Mingle, can you ask Dr. Boss* if we need xyz"
Texting is ridiculously time consuming and time-wasting. I don't mind getting one question, really. But when I get a whole string of 20 questions, from two people who should also otherwise be talking directly to one another, it gets very irritating very fast. It's being interrupted from Other Important Tasks twenty times every 60-90 seconds to answer a series of questions that could be more quickly answered through an e-mail or via a 5-minute phone call. No one actually TALKS anymore!
The worst texts are the "ask him to do this and that." After about a month playing messenger I finally said something to the both of them: "If YOU need something, then you two need to communicate. Instead of writing ME a text/e-mail, why don't you write Mark/Boss the SAME text and ask him yourself. It's kind of faster. And clearly, using me as your messenger isn't working because it's been almost two weeks and we're still working on the same thing."
It feels like I'm in a sitcom, where I'm stuck as the go-between between two people that are arguing and being petty about talking to one another.
I miss those days when you could pretend to lose reception to avoid talking to someone you didn't want to talk to. "What? Wha-er, hold on, I'm going into a tunnel!!! (making fake static noises) I'm los (fake static) ing you (more fake static) hello? hello? he-" (hangs up on purpose).
I really, really sympathize with those doctors who get calls at crazy hours of the day for things that are really non-urgent.