05Jan11

Growing up, my family never turned off the tv. It wasn’t until I moved out that I learned the bliss of silence. Do you know what it’s like to just exist in a room? What  it’s like to eat while nothing else is happening? To focus on your food or on your own thoughts … I don’t remember anymore what that’s like. I turned to music pretty quickly, and don’t have silence anymore. I still hate television though. I can’t stand watching it with other people when we could be doing anything else. There are shows that I’ll watch on my laptop, but I always lose interest eventually. My roommate and  I have a tv that sits in the middle of our living room, gathering dust. I don’t know what’s wrong with us.

Back at my mom’s house for winter break, the television is always on again. Last night, it wouldn’t turn on. We ate dinner in this really nice way, where we talked about our day and appreciated each other. Afterwards, my brother and I did a puzzle while my mother did whatever mothers do on the computer and my stepdad just went to bed. I had dared him to go a week without the television and he countered with me spending a week off my laptop, to which I agreed to do, but then he backed down. I probably couldn’t have done it anyway, and I would have cheated because he doesn’t know what my phone can do.

There’s all this talk about television and music and computers blocking us from having to interact with each other, creating artificial emotions or at least some kind of superficial filters. Maybe it’s right. Or maybe we need all of this to have something to do. I wonder what we would do, though, if we didn’t have it? There haven’t been any world wars since the internet was invented. Just saying.

I guess there haven’t exactly been any Gandhi’s either. I guess those are extreme irrelevant examples. I think we’re doing okay. Maybe I think that  just because I’ll never be able to give up my laptop. What a weird world we live in.

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