Let me set the scene for you:
A beautiful sunset on the ocean creates a breathtaking view. You are connecting as one with nature. Suddenly, next to you is a group of yahoos getting in position to take a photo with a selfie stick extending outward. Distracted by the cane-like object, you turn to avoid its swing and when you look back to the amazing sight, you now stare into dusk.
The sun has set and your mood is now as gray as the sky beyond the horizon. You shake your fist to the heavens, but nobody sees it.
Why does a stick a few feet long get me so riled up? It isn’t really the device, it is the morons wielding it. I’ve just hit the point of media overload. From people recording events with sight-blocking iPads to tourists ruining the backdrop of monuments by huddling together with a selfie stick, I’ve lost it. Some of you might tell me to take the stick out of you know where, but when I see those dastardly things I want to snap them in two and shove them somewhere as dark as the sunset I missed.
These things are the epitome of selfishness as most people wielding them seem completely oblivious to the outside world just a few feet away. “Look out people – I’ve got a selfie stick and I’m not afraid to use it” becomes the prevailing mantra of these buffoons who need an aid to extend their T-Rex-like reach.
We are truly becoming an insular world in which personal freedoms trump politeness and decency. Why don’t these arrogant loons just clear out an entire section and declare they are holding a private photo shoot. A sight overreaction? You bet, but it’s just the latest in devices that drive sane people crazy.
How about the wedge that keeps an airplane passenger in front of you from reclining in his or her seat? How about the return of headphones that are the size they used in 1960s recording studios? Put those earhouses on and you can just act oblivious to anyone gesturing to get your attention. Couple the largest Beats known to man with Google Glass eyewear and you have someone shut out from their immediate surroundings.
Look, I know I’m bordering on Grumpy Old Man syndrome here, but I’m not the only one. Bank of America stadium had the foresight to ban selfie sticks. Many museums and historic places have done the same. It might be a losing battle, but I believe it one worth fighting.
You can reach Scott Cost at firstname.lastname@example.org to take a selfie with a broken stick.