My family and I just spent a couple of nights on the Clarion River here in Pennsylvania. It was relaxing and beautiful. I spent part of yesterday morning paddling six miles down the river. The best part, I left my lap top at home, Wifi was limited, and there was no cell service. We had a land line, and some really slow satellite internet which made doing anything on a phone slowly painful. And you know what? We lived through it.
I’m as bad about this as anyone, but my whole life is filled with screens. I have two screens on my desk. I have a big one in my living room, one in the basement, one on the desk at home, and I carry one in my pocket. I have notifications telling me the second someone comments on the blog (OK, this one doesn’t happen very often), and the instant I receive an email, I get beep, buzz, and banner. (This one happens a lot.)
The truth is we are more connected than ever, yet less connected than ever. I can find out almost anything in just a few minutes. I can talk to any number of friends around the world with ease, yet…those screens are always staring at me – distracting me from the people around me.
I need to learn to turn them off. Having a few days without them reminded me how little I actually need them, and how often I rely on them for no real reason at all.
Take this blog for instance. I enjoy occasionally talking about what is on my mind, but I find that when I do, I’m constantly watching my Word Press app to find out who is commenting, and how many hits I’m getting. I know this is my problem, that it doesn’t have to be this way, but I find that this blog, like so many other things, becomes this private world apart from the world around me. It is another piece of tech distracting from flesh and blood people.
Call me a Luddite, but I’m a bit tired of screens. An image of tree is not as good as the real thing. An image of a river is not the same as experiencing one. A picture of my wife and kids is not the same as hanging out with them.
There is more than a little irony in the fact that I’m talking about this on a blog.<p><a href=”http://vimeo.com/64641161″>Get Back</a> from <a href=”http://vimeo.com/lincolnmotorco”>The Lincoln Motor Company</a> on <a href=”http://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a>.</p>