Sunday, January 13, 2008

Care and Feeding of Tech Addicted Kids

Do you have a tech addicted teen? I see them all the time-and this, so far, is what I've observed:

Children cannot, at any time, be without an earbud in at least one ear. Should you ask them to remove both, the rush of air escaping from their heads will cause an implosion.

The iPod or Mp3 is a security item that many children must have on hand at all times. Partly because of potential head implosion (see above), but also so that they can completely tune out the world around them-including annoying adults, teachers, and even their friends. They may be compromising their hearing, walking into walls and in front of buses, or missing out on their education, but at least they are happy, occupied, and no adult has to deal with them.

Cell phones are another security item that must not be more then 2 inches away from the child at all times. It is important to note that for optimum health, the phone has to be either physically in their hand or at least in their sight so that they can check messages or play with the flip cover continuously. The removal of the phone will cause extreme agitation, nausea, and regression to the state of a 2 year old wanting candy in the grocery check out line.

Text messaging is equally important. A tech-addicted child will require a text every two minutes in order to function. This includes texting friends that are less then 10 feet away, because the use of their voice and/or legs may cause a strain on the body. The phone is an extremely retro machine that should be avoided.

To keep your tech-addicted child healthy, boredom must be avoided at all costs. Any lull in the stimulation of the brain will completely suck the life out of them and leave the child confused and whiny, especially if they are required to function in social situations. Handheld video game consoles help you avoid this and will keep the child occupied in a corner all by themselves, thereby avoiding any uncomfortable social interaction. It is especially useful during school field trips, birthday parties, and at the movie theatre.

Lastly, let's not forget social networking web sites. These are not only highly addictive, but crucial to the health of the well-rounded tech addicted child. For best results, your child should spend at least a few hours a day sending pointless virtual items to friends and checking messages. Sites like this will help them avoid the real life drama of being a teen by isolating them from real friends and setting them up with virtual friends-some of whom are total strangers and potential axe murderers. Fortunately they can delete any friend, and avoid any potentially uncomfortable social situation, by hitting a delete button.

It should be noted that these points aren't limited just to tech addicted kids, such as pre-teens and teenagers. Some adults are also particularly vulnerable to tech addiction, especially with their higher cash flow and the availablility of Boxing Day sales. But...that's another post.

Edited to add: seems as though I'm not so far off after all. Is it just me, or is that just a little scary?

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