Sense & Sensitivity by Harriette Cole


DEAR HARRIETTE: Would you please do me -- and the world -- a favor and inform people and businesses that not everyone has or carries a cellphone? I can't scan something without a cellphone! No, I'm not lying when I tell you I don't have one.

Is it so out there that I do not feel the need for a cellphone? My children have them, and my grandchildren have them. I see lots of people with their phones glued to their ears, talking about nothing. When my grandchildren are home, all they do is text, but they're saying nothing. I would prefer to talk to a friend. If my grandkids send me a card, I can't believe the writing -- or should say lack of. Everything is shortcut words that I don't understand half the time.

I don't have any intention of getting a cellphone. I have a home phone with caller ID.

Another big problem is that not everyone has a computer. If you don't believe me, go to a library. All PC stations will be filled with kids and adults waiting for their turn. As soon as a business answers a phone, it tells you how you can reach it by the www.whatever stuff. I have a desktop and an iPad, but I know people who do not. These assumptions are a problem for a lot of people -- especially the elderly. -- No Cellphone, W.Va.

DEAR NO CELLPHONE: Though I do rely on my cellphone as so many others do in our culture, I agree that there is no comparison to face-to-face conversation. Human interaction remains very important. Relying on technology to connect people has been the cause of many miscommunications.

DEAR HARRIETTE: I am a 60-year-old owner of a funeral home. While I have loved running this business for more than a decade, I have realized that I would like to pursue a new career and explore new things. In order to do so, I would have to go back to school, learn new skills and trust someone else to run my business. I want the business to thrive, but I would also like to begin doing new things. Is it worth it to start over? -- Moving On, Atlanta

DEAR MOVING ON: I am a big believer in pursuing your dreams. You just need to be savvy about how you execute your plan. Start by finding someone you can train to run your business. It will take time to put someone in that leadership role. As you are looking, decide what your next career pursuit will be. Find out what schools offer courses in that field of interest and apply. Continue to pay attention to your business as you spread your wings and cultivate new talents.