Dependent upon who you talk to; people either prefer more OR less technology at the dining room table on Thanksgiving. Today’s article includes tips on how to prevent technology from taking away the family “togetherness” time.
Our family, for example, is a bunch of loud, laughing, trolling one-uppers; distractions from each other are pointless unless we need another “Yo Momma” joke from someone’s iPad. Come to any one of our family functions and you would gain a completely new perspective for what you “thought” was dysfunction within your own family.
Now on to the tips…
From the more severe, to a little more lenient, these ideas are sure to send you in the direction of keeping everyone focused on each other this holiday.
Go for total Confiscation, like a Military Briefing
Post a sentry at the front door, seizing all smartphones, iPads (bye-bye “Yo Momma” jokes), Androids, any other devices, computers, flying squirrels, etc. Anything you qualify as disruptive to the good old-fashioned conversational interaction before the big meal. If you have pre-teens, “tweens” (or a thirty-year-old brother), this just may trigger a wheezing effect or possibly screaming and crying. This is a sure sign of Jungle Madness, and can easily be treated, but be forewarned.
Create Technological Boundaries
A less militant approach would be to ask that all devices be set to silent or vibrate, and labeling the table a “no-phone-zone”. It should also be understood, but reiterated, outside is the appropriate place for phone calls so others are not forced to overhear conversations.
Now Do Your Part
So you have demanded junior put away the Nintendo DS, now is your chance to tell him all the gut-wrenching family stories he would have otherwise drowned out! Don’t forget about the time you singed off your eyebrows, with a butane torch, making Crème Brule for the dog.
AT&T recommends people take breaks between courses to check their phones for email, etc. Alternatively, you can build in breaks between the main meal and dessert, when people stand up to stretch their legs. Personally, I’ve never seen anyone take any “leg stretching breaks”, it is typically all one giant- avalanching- assembly line of coronary delicacies to me. Heck, two-thirds of the table is asleep by the time the butter softens.