CHICAGO—While using his phone to browse an online forum where users rank their favorite vacation spots, Roger Howton reflected with great fondness on the fact that he didn’t have to use his imagination for a single moment to wonder about anything.
“Just give me cold, hard facts or someone else’s opinion and I’m good,” said Howton.
Howton is one of millions of Americans that have the great privilege of being able to simply pull out their phone and answer any question that crosses their mind.
RIGHT: Photo by gailjadehamilton. (CLICK TO ENLARGE)
“I’d hate to think what it would be like to have to ponder things like I used to,” Howton explained. “My friends and I would think about all kinds of things, and it would just lead from one topic to another as our young imaginations ran wild. It was truly awful.”
Howton then said, “Say, if I wanted to know ‘What’s the deepest part of all the oceans?’ I can find out in like a second.”
Howton chuckled to himself as he said, “See, that’s exactly the kind of thing that would get me and my friends thinking about something like metaphorical depth, the significance of our existence on this planet, our mortality and all that [garbage].”
“Oh, here it is,” he said, staring at his phone. “The Marianas Trench. It’s 35,994 feet deep. Okay. See that? Now I can get on with my life.”
Howton then proceeded to attempt to beat his Angry Birds score.