I spend a lot of time with my computer. I am always gazing at it, touching it, caressing it. I just can’t seem to give it enough attention. My computer needs a lot of things from me on a day to day basis and it is one of those relationships that seems to take more out of me than it replenishes. It has almost trained and tricked me into craving its presence. Much like the beautiful siren’s song in The Odyssey, my computer’s electric glow beacons me and coaxes me from the moments that I could be present in my own life.
It’s a beautiful day. I should go outside and play! There is no need to go outside today, come over here, you must see the photos your high school friend posted from their trip to Hawaii! While I have you here, you should read this article on free-range beef and check your bank balance, you have some new emails… aren’t you expecting a package soon? You should check the tracking on that.
And down the rabbit hole I go… the next time I look up from my screen, the sun is setting and another beautiful day has been ignored, neglected, and alone. No wait, it’s me that is alone!
My devices have become such a presence in my life that I even miss them when they are gone. I miss an electronic box of metal and wires! What is wrong with this picture? When did this happen? What is so seductive about the unlimited information and possibility of the internet? I, for one, have created a world and a life for myself on my computer. It’s almost like Sim City but creepier and more mental. I have places I frequent, people I talk to, and work I do all without leaving my house. Distractions present themselves in abundance and it makes it easier to avoid the things in my (real) life that are not working. I was thinking about how I can make this funny but I have clearly failed because the reality is not funny. It’s only sad. Look at what I am doing here with this blog! I am giving you another reason to sit in front of your computer. For that, I am sorry.
All we can do to counteract the narcissistic nature of our many devices is to create a healthy separation from them. Not necessarily a breakup, just a little distance. At the moment I don’t know how to do this but I think I will start by enjoying my experiences through the eyes on my head instead of the eye on my camera phone. Do you really care that I am at a fancy new restaurant drinking a fancy new drink? I don’t think so and I am sorry for ever presuming that you would.
Thanks for reading but, for fuck’s sake, STOP LOOKING AT THIS SCREEN.