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Why the iPhone scares the crap out of me

None of us look where we're going when we're talking on our cell phones. The iPhone, with its creative visual interface for Web browsing, ups the ante.

The other day I was talking on my cell phone and tried to walk into Trader Joe's through the exit door. I looked up to find a row of registers blocking my way and a guy with a name tag looking at me funny.

"Hey man, why don't you get that thing out of your ear?" he said, not entirely without humor.

He had a point.

It's ironic. I make fun of people who drive around with these things glued to their ears. I imagine they can't stand a minute alone with themselves and their thoughts. Hungry for distraction, desperate for human contact, they talk, talk, talk.

I have a neighbor who I think had her cell phone surgically attached to her head. It has to be; it's always there. I heard that one of her kids was actually born that way. I'm thinking it's a new genetic mutation that will eventually propagate through the entire human race.

The only saving grace is that cell phones are primarily just that - phones. Sure, there are Blackberrysand text messaging, but it's pretty difficult to drive while texting. I'm ashamed to admit I tried it once or twice, almost hit the freeway embankment, and then never did it again.

Although we all screw up from time to time, there's really no excuse for not keeping our eyes on where we're going when we're on the phone. Until now.

The iPhonemay not be the first, but it will without a doubt be the most popular phone with a decent visual interface and some really cool features for Web browsing and whatever else you choose to strain your eyeballs on.

I don't know about you, but that scares the crap out of me. What's next, head-up display contact lenses? Nice product strategy, huh? Has anybody trademarked iLense yet?

On the other hand, if Jobsmade it, Mossbergliked it, and all of you are waiting in line to shell out $599 to buy it, who am I to say, "Look out for the embankment!"