The hustle and bustle of the holiday season is upon us.

The hustle and bustle of the holiday season is upon us. Each year, it seems to arrive with just a blink of the eye. The other day, I received my first Christmas letter by email. When I opened the attachment, it was written on a Christmas letterhead like you would receive in the mail. I found myself a bit taken back, then I remembered my first e-vite — a word that didn’t exist a few years ago, and now I receive these with no judgment attached.

I began to wonder in this world of ours today of around 7 billion people, is this entire “social media” making our lives easier or more complicated? The phrase itself: “social,” meaning a sharing of ideas, opinions, and images, combined with “media,” a place where a publication occurs.

Back in the day before today’s social media, we had to rely on books, newspapers, television and radio. We had a landline phone at home and a landline phone at work. Somewhere along the line, an answering machine came along. This is how we communicated. There was only one phone company we had to deal with. And I can never really remember having any trouble with their customer service, which mainly consisted of changing our address when we moved.

I can still remember as a little girl, going to our neighbor’s and watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on her TV — as ours was only black and white! And I remember hours of playing outside, setting up store and make-believing what we would be when we grew up. And on a rare occasion we may have gone out to dinner to the Four B’s restaurant.

Fast forward to today. It is not just “social media,” it is more like MASS media. Today, I still have a phone landline, but I use it mostly so I can find out where I left my cellphone in my house! It brings a smile to my face as I remember maybe 15 years ago, sharing with my husband that I felt I needed a cellphone, and his reply, “Why?” Today, he can get a bit bothered if I leave my cellphone at home and he cannot get hold of me — just crazy, all the stuff we have to keep track of via “social media” today.

The other day while watching TV, instead of directing me to its website, a company directed me to its Pinterest page. Contractors are building Houzz pages for their clients to view. And instead of having two or three television channels, we have hundreds to choose from — and many times, I still cannot find something I want to watch.

When we moved into our home, we chose to go with cable so that we could watch TV literally in every room of the house — as long as I had a cable and an outlet — for no additional charge. Recently, as many of you have experienced, I was forced to downsize my options where we could watch television in our home unless I wanted to now add a box to each room for an additional monthly charge per box.

Think of all the items we are inclined to keep track of on a daily basis: texts, emails which may consist of more than one email account, voicemails, answering ma-chines, faxes sent. Then, there is Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram and blogs, to just name a few of the more popular Internet items that come to mind.

It is estimated that Facebook, a social media that I have been trying to stay away from, has over 1 billion monthly users. I recently added my picture to my Face-book account and have had people daily wanting to be my friend — which means they will then be sending me more information to manage!

Are we all on information overload? Within seconds, we can find any recipe, research article, product information, person, or even go shopping — all while staying in the comfort of our homes with a few finger movements on Google. Whereas about 10 years ago, most of us were not using this tool, now today, try to live without it!

What about your cellphone? It is the rare few reading this article who do not own one of these devices today — if not every person in your family. And those of you who are part of the 1 billion number of monthly Facebook users, the true social media, how could you survive without it?

With all this information and literally hundreds of other areas to get information from at Central, we want to make your life as simple as possible — with one call!

**Your comfort is our Central Concern, call Central for all your heating, cooling, plumbing, electrical and drain cleaning needs at 756-6656.

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