The case against opposable thumbs….

As any anthropologist worth their salt will tell you, the reason for man’s rise to the top of the animal world was based on two things….his superior brain size and opposable thumbs. In other words, his ability to envision great things and then build or create them using his dexterity, i.e. his opposable thumbs.

But alas, as with most things in life, there is always a point of decreasing returns. I think I can describe this particular phenomena in one word….texting.

kids text

Soon, verbal conversation will go the way of cursive writing. Let me give you an example:

Texter #1: “hi, jci. imu. fc i will soon bomw 2 mall. csm b/c paw. wil meet u aeap.

Texter #2: “slap. wytm when u get 2 mall? looking f/ward to a f2f. oatus bm&y my so thinks my new tat is a cwot ntim but he is sitd about the 1 ihp.

Texter #1: np jtlyk he told me was j/k about that. w8. oops. p911! gotta go. sys. l&k

Here is that same phone conversation between them before the English language was reduced to acronyms and abbreviations:

#1: “Hi. Just checking in. I miss you. Fingers crossed, I will soon be on my way to the mall. I can’t say much because my parents are watching. I will meet you as early as possible.”

#2: “Sounds like a plan! Will you text me when you get to the mall? Looking forward to a face to face. On a totally unrelated subject, between you and me my significant other thinks that my new tattoo is a complete waste of time, but he is still in the dark about the one I have planned.”

#1: “No problem, Just to let you know, he told me he was just kidding about that. Wait. Oops, parent alert! Gotta go. See you soon. Love and kisses.”

Without opposable thumbs we’d still be speaking intelligently like this. On the other hand, to paraphrase the “infinite monkey theorem”, if we put an infinite number of monkeys in a room with an infinite number of computers, tablets and phones, eventually, they would write all the great books.


And that’s not to mention the dangers on the highway as a result of texting, but that’s a subject for another, more somber blog.

texting irmc!





16 thoughts on “The case against opposable thumbs….

  1. You are so hip and with it in a far-out and happenin’ way!

    I now do my share of texting, but I can only manage it with my left forefinger. Whenever I try to use thumbs it looks like something done by the non-bestseller-writing-monkey in the room.

  2. Brilliant stuff. Until I read your “translation” later in the post I had no idea what was being said. In fact I laboured over it for some time before continuing with the post, but now exhausted by my translating efforts. Thank goodness you told it what it all meant or might have had to lie down suffering what they called in my childhood “Crossword Puzzle Exhaustion” or CPE as my doctor calls it.

  3. I still text the old fashioned way (with punctuation and all). It takes me eons on writes a text, but, by golly, the recipient will know what the heck I am saying…not a “lol” anywhere to be seen. Call me a dinosaur, but call me one full spelled out, otherwise, I won’t know what you’re calling me! 🙂

    Great post, Al! I’m impressed you knew all that texting lingo…

Your turn to write, but please don't be wittier than me. My ego is quite fragile.

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