The scene in front of me

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I’m old.

I know I’m old.

I’m 44, almost 45, and with the years comes a crankiness and orneriness that probably doesn’t endear myself to many people.

That being said …

I’m sitting in a Laguna Beach coffee shop. Everything is delightful. The coffee. The cookie. The music. The ambiance. I’m rolling through USFL work, happy as a guy can be. And then, egad, they came. There are five of them. Teenaged young women, armed with … cell phones.

When I say “armed,” I mean “armed.” The cell phone in the hands of a teen is a nuclear weapon against silence and tranquility. Videos played aloud. Music played aloud. Conversations on speaker. But, more than a weapon against silence and tranquility, cell phones have become, oddly, a weapon against togetherness. I’m watching these young women as I write this, and they’re together only in proximity. They’re liking pictures, liking videos, eyes glued, zombie-like, to the glowing rectangle before them.

It’s an off-putting sight to behold. Yet one, as the father of a teen, that I see far too often.