You look at her blankly, thinking to yourself something along the lines of "who in heavens name is this lady? Is my memory that bad?"
Then the lady goes on. "Oh, really? That's great! I'm so glad to hear that you are doing well! So when are you going to come visit again?" it's then that you realize that she can't be talking to you. A glance around you confirms that she isn't talking to anyone there either. (Remember, we are reminiscing about the days when you were unfamiliar with such occurrences.) At this point, being unfamiliar with Bluetooth headsets, you start to doubt the woman's sanity. A few days later, you hear someone mention this new shtick, a wireless headset for cellphones.
A light bulb goes off in your head. "Aha! The woman MAY have been sane after all!"
And then, as the invisible friend became more common, you made promises to yourself. "I will never be as obnoxious as those people."
Then, we backslide. Bluetooths are convenient. Bluetooths are cool. And best of all, bluetooths are cheap. So you go out. You buy a Bluetooth. First, you use it sparingly. Like when you're driving and you need to make an urgent phone call. Then you are driving distances and use your Bluetooth to catch up with an old friend, while using up a third of your monthly minutes allotment. Then, you start putting your Bluetooth on your ear every time you get behind the wheel.
As time progresses, and scenes such as I described earlier become everyday occurrences, your resolve slips. You find yourself wearing your Bluetooth when you "run into the store for a minute." and then it's not long before you are the one walking around stores, chatting loudly with your invisible friend about various things that you would never speak about in front of strangers.
Think for a minute. Is this activity really any more sane than it was the first time you saw it?Does more and more people succumbing to stupidity make the activity any less stupid? The other day I was in a restaurant with my sister. (Yes, MP and I went out to eat together, for some quality sister-time! [bows]) There was a couple at the next table that really disturbed me. They were both sitting there with Bluetooth headsets in their ears. I really can't tell you if they were on their phones, or simply talking to each other, as I am not THAT nosy, but either way, think. Is that a sign of a healthy relationship? I am obviously not an expert on inter-spousal relationships (I've never even been on a date!;) but that sight didn't sit well with me. Is that how much they value each other's company, that they can't disconnect from their headsets long enough to eat their penne al la vodka? (No I made that up. I don't think I noticed what they were eating.)
It's a scary thought though. Things get to be normal, just because people do it.
Remember your first glimpse of sushi? "I will never, ever, eat that." Now, it's impossible to get a hashgacha on a kosher food establishment without a sushi bar. (Or maybe it's just a matter of nobody wanting to attempt such a thing. Either way I've never seen one.)
I would say the same thing about certain styles. One style in particular bothers me to no end. The first time I saw it, I was horrified. "A frum girl dressed like that? What was is she thinking?" Now, this very same style has creeped into even the most chasidish of neighborhoods. Is it any less horrible looking than the first time I saw it? No, I am not refraining from this style because I am some frummy rebbetzin, (not to say I'm not one) but rather because I can't forget my first impression of that style, and because I know that the style is the same now as it was then. If anything changed, it's my perception of it.
Isn't it sad though, how so many things "become" normal? Wouldn't you say that if they didn't start out "normal" they never will be?