Technology

Untangling Your Digital Life (While Embracing It)

This Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2014 photo, shows the WhatsApp and Facebook app icons on an iPhone in New York. On Wednesday Facebook announced it is buying mobile messaging service WhatsApp for up to $19 billion in cash and stock. (AP Photo/Karly Domb Sadof)
This Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2014 photo, shows the WhatsApp and Facebook app icons on an iPhone in New York. On Wednesday Facebook announced it is buying mobile messaging service WhatsApp for up to $19 billion in cash and stock. (AP Photo/Karly Domb Sadof)

 

(CNet) – It wasn’t until I was lying on a doctor’s exam table that I realized just how much I was suffering from FOMO — fear of missing out.

As the surgeon worked on my arm, I turned and looked up at the ceiling. My limb was so heavily anesthetized a shark could have been gnawing on it and I wouldn’t have flinched. But there was another reason I wasn’t paying attention: the buzzing in my pants. Because this was a simple elective surgery, I didn’t need to change out of my clothes — and I got to keep my smartphone — and it was buzzing and buzzing.

The doctor swapped out surgical tools and made a noise that normally would have made me look, but I was focused on the now unnatural silence of my device. I couldn’t stop myself from asking, “Hey, can I check my email?”

The doctor didn’t even think about his answer. “No,” he said and began doing up my stitches. Looking back, I realize it was an idiotic request. But can you blame me?

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