Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Techie Irony

Today I ran across a New York Times article titled “Is There a Method in Cellphone Madness?” that explored the cellphone craze going on in America. Not only did it show us that an economist wouldn’t even agree with the billing plan logic, but it also showcased the skyrocketing average texts sent per month. You can read the article for yourself if you would like to learn more about how cell phone companies truly are ripping us off, and how the Europeans are using a much more economical model.

However, the point of my blog today is not to recap this article, but to discuss where the line should be drawn on how much time we spend using technology gadgets like our laptop, cell phones, illegal TV downloads, and the list goes on. Mainly, I got quite scared at how vastly different my life from when I was 12 varies from how it is now in terms of my internet consumption. Back when I was younger, I was outdoors all the time. I played in the woods or in the stream with Willa or my brother when he wasn’t mad at me. I swung on vines (sometimes they did break) or I walked to groom the horses in the field across the way. My parents made it a regular event to go hiking at one of the local nature preserves every so often on the weekends. If I was not outdoors, I was caught up in a book, and as soon as I finished that book, my nose would already be in the next book.

Now, it’s a different story. Granted, I do have a full time job that requires me to be connected wirelessly for at least 9 hours a day, but even when I get home, when I’m not running, I choose to spend the rest of my personal time on the computer. It’s rather pathetic when I think about all the other ways that I could be intellectually stimulating my mind, such as reading a book or studying for the GMAT. This past weekend the weather was 70 degrees outside and I didn’t even go hiking. I did go outside for a walk around the neighborhoods, but it definitely is not the same as being surrounded by a mass of beautiful trees that could quite possibly be 343934 times my age. If I actually tracked the amount of time that my computer or cell phone is in front of my face, it could quite possibly add up to 13 hours during the weekdays, and even more if I was feeling extremely compelled to facebook stalk even more people that I have not seen or talked to in over eight years.

Perhaps I should take notes from Garrett, who happens to despise most technology. In fact, I’m quite certain that he only uses such devices because it’s mandatory in this day and age, and, not to mention, his girlfriend would have a conniption fit if he threw out the cell phone when he was away in the minor leagues. To get by, he texts sparingly (only in response to me to keep me satisfied), uses his email account that I created for him mainly to figure out his private pitching lessons or to send me cute youtube videos, and only talks to about three people on his cell phone regularly.

I’d like to take a step back and learn from my technological-disconnected boyfriend, but at the same time…I sure do love to send 300+ texts a month or facebook stalk one person for more than one hour or even “blow up someone’s facebook wall” so that they get a ton of emails with my name in it from Facebook. Even if I just put Facebook on timeout for one hour every day, then I would get more sleep, read more, run more, eat more...I used to think that someday I would “outgrow” facebook, but now that my parents are on there, and it is the main way to “keep up” with my friends and family, I highly doubt that will happen.

Of course, here I sit, writing this blog on my computer, and after I am done, the blog will be automatically imported to Facebook for all the world to continue our craze with technology.


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