Last Updated: Tue Aug 09, 2011 10:58 am (KSA) 07:58 am (GMT)

Nadia Idriss Mayen: Passer-by

Technology and the fast paste of modern living had made many people discontent from their neighbors whether at work or home. (File Photo)
Technology and the fast paste of modern living had made many people discontent from their neighbors whether at work or home. (File Photo)

Early Wednesday evening, I walked outside with a colleague of mine to get some fresh air after a long day of writing and editing video reports; I sat next to an employee of the company and nodded a hello. We started conversation on our roles and the departments we work in when he said, “You always pass by my desk.”

I felt quite terrible knowing for months I passed someone without even acknowledging his presence. His statement caught me off-guard as I honestly do not recall ever seeing him.

I want to blame technological advancements and social media domination, people are usually too distracted by the fast-pace life to realize who or what they’re surrounded by, and to take a moment to understand or appreciate it.

Moreover technology and social media sites have become crutches, and have deteriorated our communication skills – we have started to lose grasp on maintaining a conversation without having some gadget to fiddle with.

How many times have you walked by people but didn’t notice because your nose was buried in your iPhone? Or perhaps missed a chance to have a quick chat with someone because you were in the middle of instant messaging your friend who’s just around the corner? Or email work during a cup of tea with a friend because it just can’t wait?

I realize an hour later this person who I never noticed walked in the room only to sit a few meters away from me. Should I blame my concentration on my work? Or is it because I’m always deep in thought I never notice who passes by?

(Nadia Idriss Mayen, Executive Producer of Web TV at Al Arabiya English, can be reached at: nadia.mayen@mbc.net)

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