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iPod etiquette is very...oh man, I love this song!

Dan Pourhadi

Ever been in a situation where some jerk in front of you is walking at a pace easily surpassed by that of a Macy's mannequin, and you can't seem to ask him to move aside because he's so engrossed in the latest "Barenaked Ladies" album playing on his iPod that he just can't hear you? What? You're that jerk? Well, then perhaps you should read Vern Seward's column on iPod etiquette. Seward opines on our growing culture of isolationism, and how the ubiquity of the infamous white earbuds is encouraging us to choose secluded serenity over basic social interaction.

He's certainly got a point. I admit to being a victim of the "I see his lips moving, but this song is obviously much more interesting than anything he could possibly say" mindset, and often choose the comfortable familiarity of my music library over idle chit-chat about the weather or that crazy rumor about Monica liking Jim, even though Jim has his sights set on Betty. But at what point does it start to damage society? Does the iPod really play a pivotal role in our culture's growing attitude of "you do your thing, I'll do mine"? Or is it just the net result of our increasing dependency on technology as a whole?

Time will tell just how much this affects us, and if it will have serious repercussions on our everyday lifestyles -- or if we're just blowing some trivial concept vastly out of proportion. In the meantime, however, read Seward's column and ease up on the ignore-the-world attitude, okay? Jerk.

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