(Tap tap tap) Is this thing still working? It is? Oh, good.
I wouldn’t blame you if you’d wondered. I tend to go in fits and starts when it comes to this blog—lately, mainly because I’ve been running to keep up with just about everything else. And I’m so easily distracted. The computer has pretty much replaced television as my idiot box (in more ways than one). I go online to look something up or check email and an hour later I’ve wandered into some backwater of Wikipedia, I’ve got a dozen tabs open, or I’ve fallen under the hypnotic spell of LOLcats.
It’s not pretty.
And then there’s social media. It’s gotten to the point where I’ve deleted the Facebook app off my phone and my iPod. This is a good thing for two reasons: 1) Facebook is an enormous time suck that could be better spent working on my various short story assignments for the three workshops I’m taking. (OK, one of the workshops is in the graphic novel, so I should call those assignments comics—I think I’ve come up with my character for one of them: a neurotic alien who crashes his flying saucer somewhere in Middle America, where his universal translator gets him into trouble but also allows him to talk to dogs.) Anyway, that’s reason #1. 2) I am finding I don’t have the patience for Facebook lately. I could enumerate all the ways it irks me—Vaguebooking, ranting, or holier-than-thou-ness (all of which I’ve done at one point or another—which means that, yes, I try my own patience sometimes). If I went into detail about that, though, I’d just sound like someone’s grandpop shouting “Get off my lawn!”
Too late, perhaps.
I’ve taken to writing things down in a little notebook again. (That’s the latest one over there on the right. Christmas present from my friend Jan. Pretty nifty, yeah? For those of you who were born too recently, the cover’s supposed to look like an audiocassette. Those were these things that were around before CDs and after vinyl. You’ll probably never see one outside of a garage sale.) I used to write lists in a notebook as a matter of habit, but fell out of it when I started using my iPod for to-do lists, notes, and whatnot. (Whatnot is a word that I don’t think is used often enough.) I’ve found I don’t follow through with things when I type them into a list on a device though, so it’s back to pen and paper.
I sometimes worry that I’m developing a curmudgeonly relationship with technology. I don’t want to encourage that, but even the terminology sounds weird, doesn’t it? We don’t have a “relationship” with technology. They’re things, inanimate objects. They’re not people, or pets, or anything alive. (They’re not even plants.) I guess it’s because we do things to them and they “respond” that leads me to think of them in relationship terms.
Sometimes I need a break from that relationship, though—and that says more about me than it does about the gadgets or what anyone else does with them. Now, I’ve got to go sharpen my pencil and work on a story that’s due tomorrow….