by Dave Williams
Thanksgiving was the day before yesterday. My son and his family called CarolAnn and me as sons and daughters have always been obligated to do on holidays.
That’s a time-honored tradition that must never die, by the way.
We loved talking with them. As a special treat, they called again yesterday because it was CarolAnn’s birthday. Neither call was made via Zoom or Facetime.
A week or so ago I set up a call with my doctor. It was so insignificant I don’t even remember why I called but the fact that it was easy and super-efficient was a big motivator. I wouldn’t have made an office appointment for this particular issue, whatever it was, but now I can consult with my doctor face-to-face without leaving my La-Z-Boy or even having to put on pants.
What a world.
Doc Friendman and I have never met in person. Seriously. CarolAnn and I have been his patients for more than a year but in his office, we always met with Physician Assistants never with the guy whose name is on the door until last week when I met his lovely face on my phone.
The P.A. must have called in sick that day.
I’m fine with all of this. As I said, I love the convenience and the fact that so far my online medical consultations haven’t required that I open my mouth, lift my shirt or drop my drawers in front of my phone.
I just wonder why we have to see each other’s faces? Wouldn’t a simple voice call be just as effective?
When my kids phone I’m constantly aware of how Zoom and Facetime make me look like some sort of fat cadaver in bad lighting. I don’t like that.
When I call the doctor for a face-to-face I don’t much care about my appearance. Seeing sick, fat, dying people is his job. But I wonder if Facetime, Zoom and Android Duo aren’t just an excuse to charge my insurance company for a regular office visit.
Sometimes technology has to explain to us why we need these “improvements”.
I’m reminded of a recent Tweet I saw:
Last night my friend asked to use a USB port to charge his cigarette, but I was using it to charge my book. The future is stupid.