Friday, January 27, 2012

The Adult Pacifier

by Kati Smith

I know a girl who called Starbucks cups, “Adult Sippy Cups.” It’s true—the two things sort of have the same affect. As a Starbucks addict lover, I will confess that I’m no better than a 2 year old with her favorite Dora the Explorer sippy cup—in the morning, on long car trips, and when my mom needs me to stop crying while she runs errands. [And by “my mom” and “errands” I mean “my boss” and “meetings”.]

I take it with me everywhere.

A few weeks ago I was scrolling through my Twitter feed while standing in a long line at the grocery store when, unexpectedly, my iPhone died. Panic set in, I started to get anxious, and I even tried to turn it back on knowing it would never work.

Boo. Just boo. What in the world am I going to do NOW?! The world is practically going to end if I have to stand here in this line for the next ten minutes and THINK…or whatever it is I’m supposed to do without an iPhone!

[Yes, the thoughts it my head are dramatic. Don’t worry, I’m working on it.]

Suddenly, amidst all of THINKING my brain was subjected to in that line (at the check stand that wasn’t even nearby a People Magazine rack for heaven’s sake!) I suddenly had an epiphany. Yes, an epiphany, people!

If Starbucks is an adult sippy cup, then my iPhone is an adult pacifier. A BINKY!

A sippy cup only lasts so long, and there’s only so much apple juice my infant stomach can take, but the binky…yes, the pacifier…I could suck on that thing basically all day. I’ll never cry, never need your attention, never need anything but the binky.

Waiting for a check at dinner? Binky. Sitting in the doctor’s office? Binky. Listening to the pastor on a Sunday and getting bored? Binky.

Binky. All day, every day.

If I were a baby I’d be dependent on my pacifier and my sippy cup. But I’m an adult, so I’ll stick with my white, paper, Starbucks to-go cup and the various applications on my iPhone for hours of time-filler and mindless thinking.

Somewhere between waiting for my groceries to slide down the black conveyor and the moment I got to my house to plug my phone in for some battery, I thought about it all. My attention span is a nanosecond, and when the speed of real life doesn’t fly by as quickly as thoughts in my Twitter feed, I am positively undone. Like an infant without something to suck on.

Maybe I’m the only one, but right now I’m a little embarrassed that I just showed up to the 7th grade still sucking on that pacifier and toting around my sippy cup.

Are you addicted to your iPhone? Do you think that technology is distracting us? If so, what things do you think we might be missing out on because we’re so attached to our devices?


  1. very good post. We were just talking about this at church on wednesday, our dependency to technology.
    We also saw this video about social media tech:

    really eye opening. I believe we must be careful (and by we, I'm talking mostly to myself) to not let technology rob us of our time with God. It does so often.

    1. Wow, interesting video. Thanks for sharing! So true that we need to be careful--it's just figuring out what exactly that means that gets tough!

  2. So guilty!!!! I love this post Kati - you nailed it as always. xo

  3. Jesus often withdrew to solitary places to pray (Luke 5:16).

    A typical day in His ministry was filled with unrelenting crowds, teaching the people, healing the sick, casting out demons, and not to mention the emotional drain of putting up with the religious leaders' scandalous accusations. It is no wonder Jesus needed time to refill and recharge.
    In our day we are also surrounded with constant action, noise, and demands. Modern technology is good as long as we possess and use it for our benefit rather than allowing it to consume and possess us.
    It is vital for us to take time to be alone with Him so that we will have something to give when we are with our family, friends, and colleagues. If we are going to be a blessing to others, then our well must be filled with His presence and His word.

    “Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.”
    Jesus | Mark 6:31

  4. I've never thought of it that way, but this is definitely an eye opener! I just got a smart phone this week, and needless to say, I'm already addicted to it. Before I bought my new phone I would always say I'd never be one of "those people" with thier face glued to their phone. Sad to say, but now I've become one! I believe it can be very distracting, so I'm going to be intentional about limiting my time on the phone. Sure there are tons of great Bible apps, but nothing is as good as sitting down with the book in your hand and really digging in.

  5. Kati girl... beautifully written post! AGAIN! And yes, my mother has not been able to ween my from my adult binky. I can hardly sit through a movie without checking my iPhone. It's a sickness. But I love being connected!

    But most of all I LOVE YOU!

  6. oh girl, love this post :) so true about me!! thanks for the reminder and for pointing these truths out.



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