Wednesday, February 20, 2019

TXT-abulous And Loving It

by Chedvah (writer), Greater London-Harrow, November 05, 2007


The mobile phone seems like it is here to stay. Anyone who has graced the public transport system, the streets and even indoors knows what I am speaking about. Some people stop midway on the pavement and start giggling while making/taking a call, reading a text and or replying it. I remember my first mobile phone was an Ericsson, one of those big heavy things that you could throw down and seemed infallible but things have changed since then. I started off as one of those loud mouthed mobile phone chatters. I still explain to my friends in London that I do it only because the landline connections we had back home in my country were initially muffled and unclear so the average person used to shout to get their message across clearly. I have since started to step up since the phone lines here are usually clear and sometimes one can’t just stand everyone knowing their business.

Text messaging started off somewhere in New York about 1989 and then in London in about 1992. Honestly I cant remember when I started texting in Uganda, but it was only with those from the same network, one couldn’t text across other mobile phone networks, but now cross network texting is possible there. I embraced text message with a furore as I realised that it afforded the mobile phone user the ability to say anything anyhow without feeling remorse or a sense of guilt.

Sounds good??? Text messaging is slowly taking on a way of its own being adapted by some cowards and lazy people who can’t be bothered to spend a minute or two calling to explain something. I remember at one of my jobs, my manager gave me their mobile phone number at induction saying any of us could text if we were unable to make it to work or if there was a problem. What a great relief I felt, texting instead of calling, I thought to myself then, “this is getting better by the moment.” One of my old managers used to say that by the time you can make a call about not being able to make it into work then you were fit enough to come in, we debated about this for very long and there were no winners.

The good old telephone conversation is slowly dying out. Once I was expecting a visitor then received a text saying...’Runnin L8 C U Soon.’ This made me furious but what could I do but only reply ‘OK.’ Text messaging is the new hype; one can do it in the dark, at a boring staff meeting, on one’s way home and anywhere like toilets. Someone I know was out on a date and they sent me a text pleading that I should call them so that they could make a quick exit. Shameless this text messaging is. Text messaging though seemingly clandestine is now one of the cheapest and best forms of communications. Some websites like are offering ten free text a month so one can only sign on and join the craze and it is open to those on any mobile network not necessarily O2.

The jargon that comprises the texting world can be too overwhelming and at the same time fun. Text written as ‘TXT,’ Later as ‘L8r’ and people have gone out to concoct various lingoes to fit into their texting world. I am trying to catch on but it’s all too much but I am getting by and my call charges have reduced.

A recent study (Made by BBC) made in Britain has showed that over a billion text messages are sent every year. It also went on to state that young people who are text messaging are more apt at having good grades in their English than their non texting counterparts. Probably there are many parents out there who are put off by paying incredulous mobile phone bills for their children. But take heart dear parents there is a light at the end of this seeming harrowing mobile phone experience.

Text messaging has the wow factor; it’s cheap and sometimes ‘free,’ easy for people on the go and cuts out on all the noise pollution. Recently I was on the bus, and some young person received a phone call on their mobile, in just a few minutes I had a great inkling of their life. This was followed by other people on the bus getting phone calls giving details of where they were going and what they were going to do, which all sounds fair in a good world but it isn’t a good world anymore, there is a lot of danger out there. At the moment I have resorted to good TXT, my mobile phone buttons are at the mercy of my fingers hoping that I can get my message across clearly and concisely.

About the Writer

Chedvah is a writer for BrooWaha. For more information, visit the writer's website.
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