Monday, May 25, 2015

DISTRACTION


Contemporary Americans are addicted to distraction. Electronic media are largely responsible. With the distraction of electronic media comes dependence upon it. With the distraction of electronic media, comes a distancing from reality. With the distraction of electronic media, can come a loss of practical manual and personal skills.
 
I have found it takes making the same recipe at least a dozen times over a relatively short period to get a predictable quality. I have gone years without baking a loaf of bread after becoming quite good at it. When I try to bake a loaf after that pause, it does not come out as well as I would like. It takes several loaves to get back at it in a predictably successful way.
 
If I spend my leisure hours distracted by electronic media, I am not practicing those behaviors which do not entail using electronic media. I am not maintaining other skills. I am not making things. I am not relating in real time with real people about real life.
 
I live a rather monotonous life. Most of my contemporaries would find my life boring. Some have not hesitated to indicate this. My physician regularly asks the same question on my quarterly visits. "Do you have any trips planned?" I always laugh when I reply "No, do you?" I have neither the health nor inclination to ride around a foreign country with a busload of bourgeois seniors, armed with baby pictures of their grandchildren.
 
I do not want to be distracted from the realities of my life. I want to be immersed in my daily life as it is. I want to understand myself, my environment and my companions. I have little time ahead to learn a great deal about life. Perhaps, if others spent less time being distracted and more time being wholly engaged in life's realities, the world would be a more peaceful place.

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