I know I am some Generation Old-Fart, but I do wonder about the proliferation of the IPod and its ubiquitousness. Are younger people going to deafen sooner? Will social interaction in real time wither on the vine? You cannot get on public transport without seeing many people cocooned in IPod land. If you ask someone something, they have to pull out their ear-plugs to respond.
I remember getting on a bus in a large city and then, at the next stop, a young woman and her boyfriend got on. She was listening to her IPod and he just looked around, looking slightly at a loss as to what to occupy his time with. They travelled several kilometres into the centre of the city and she never exchanged a word with her boyfriend. They got off before me and she continued to walk down the footpath with him, still plugged in and plugged out from him. That is got to be some kind of weird, doesn't it?
I prefer my version. I don't own an IPod. I have what I call a "Mind's Eye-Pod". I walk around singing songs out loud or quietly, depending on where I am. This has at least two distinct advantages: I can stop at any time and respond to social interaction plus I work hard at remembering song lyrics which I am sure has a good effect on my memory. I'm training my neurons, exercising my vocal cords and having fun, all in one fell swoop!