The internet just slows us all downby Terry Eagleton / June 19, 2013 / Leave a comment
Published in July 2013 issue of Prospect Magazine
Brring brring: “Are you listening in on my private conversation?” © Vetta
I shall soon be the only EMV (email virgin) left in the country. I have never sent an email, though I’ve occasionally cheated and asked my teenage son to do so for me. Nor have I ever used the internet. I am no more capable of going online than I am of getting to Saturn. I don’t know how to text. I do have a mobile phone, but it’s immobile. I never take it out of the house, for fear of triggering some ridiculous trend in which hordes of people march down the street bawling into these sinister little gadgets. If you allowed people to use mobile phones in public, you might end up being forced to listen to them on trains and in cafes, asking noisily whether the invoices have arrived. The prospect is too appalling to contemplate. The only time I might conceivably have needed a mobile phone outside the house was when I once turned my car over in the Irish mountains and was trapped inside the vehicle for a while. When a passer-by did finally try to use a phone, however, it didn’t work, since the mountains were too high. Hanging upside down like a gigantic bat, my chest crushed painfully against the air bag, I felt quietly vindicated.