Friday, May 2, 2014

When I Am King, You Will Be First Against The Wall

It's a long-standing joke among some family members that my dad stopped sleeping once both of his daughters were living in Toronto. When I started living alone over three years ago, that probably didn't help matters much either. Sorry, Dad.

It isn't about being overprotective or convinced that I can't take care of myself - my parents worry about my safety mainly because they're not here; they can't always know that I'm safe. And that incident with the cab driver a few years back didn't calm their worries by any means. Neither do the reports of assault that we constantly hear about. But if those kinds of things are going to keep me locked up in my apartment, afraid of what may happen, then what's the point of living here at all?

Option #2
Lately a lot of articles have popped up about a new free service called Kitestring. It's pretty simple - you set up emergency contacts and an emergency message, then let the service know you're heading out. You set the time (depending how long you think your trip from A to B will be), and they text you when that time passes to make sure you made it to your destination safely.

If you don't respond, they let your emergency contacts know by sending out the message you set beforehand. You can use it via browser or text.

The default emergency message

On Saturday night I decided to give it a try. I had set up my contacts a few days prior, saved my emergency message, & had the Kitestring number on my phone. I was taking a cab home from downtown and gave myself a one-hour window to get there.

This is how it worked:

Because I texted "Ok", they knew I was home safe and didn't need to send a message to my emergency contacts.

Easy peasy.

Though it may seem like it, this is not a sponsored post. Kitestring has never contacted me, or vice versa. I just think it's a simple tool that can offer a bit of peace of mind - both for ourselves, and for those who worry about us.

So go forth and be safe, my grasshoppers. Because even if no one else does, your ol' pal Kris cares about your well-being (and your ability to go out and grab a beer without worry).

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