Saturday, January 9, 2010

9 January 1956/2010 “the siren song of technology; Who owns Whom?”

 computer 50s

We had some interesting comments on my last post about technology and so I thought we could discuss it more today. We certainly live in a time where our day to day lives cannot really be untouched by it. The very fact I am able to sit here in my little corner of the world typing away and editing pictures for you to see and discuss, is part of that technology. But, what I think my fear is letting it get the better of us.

If we are wise, we will take the technology that is smart and makes sense and use it as a tool .It should have it’s place as Part of our lives not OUR LIVES. That is to say, my computer sits upon my desk and holds all the technology for me to do what I am now doing,but I want to treat it like a typewriter, a thesaurus, a photo album a printing press. I want it to be TOOLS for me to use to express and share my ideals. An improved version of what man has wanted since her first laid down marks and said, “this represents what I am thinking”. I don’t want it to be my ‘super awesome movie machine, my hour after hour music player mixed with endless movies and shopping and ads ads ads and more celebrity gossip than I can handle!” For me, that is not productive.

We CAN live a vintage life along side technology. Indeed, the 1950’s person loved the ‘new and improved’. But they had generations behind them of people of sense and ‘adults’ that knew you were not suppose to eat your dessert first, or sit for hours in ‘pleasure’ alone because then it is not special or taste wonderful, as you have overindulged.

When technology became part of lives in the past, we were not left to overindulge. We didn’t rush home and spend all day and night on our typewriters. The only real parallel seems to be the increase use of the telephone for the teens of the 1950s (the now older baby-boomer generation) who seemed not able to get enough of a good thing. There were many cartoons of teens talking on the phone for hours much to the chagrin of their parents.

Is this the beginning of our modern obsession with our technology? That it is not a help or aid to our lives but dictates and represents our lives? Is it just the level of ease in the technology itself, or is it that we have breed ourselves into the obsession with the new and better? I don’t honestly know. What I do know is that I am going to try my hardest to USE technology in my new vintage life, so that I have a life and not so that it becomes my life.

Over indulgence seems to be almost gone as a concept in the modern world, because it is commonplace to be constantly indulged. We can talk, text, sext, listen, watch, read, play, and be amused all the time anywhere. So, when will our pleasure centers overload? The special and unique is part of the litany of living. The beauty and pride of workmanship and achievement is gone when it is so easy and always there. We become lax and the wonderful becomes commonplace. WE have achieved the level of unhappy self indulged boredom that was once only the province of  kings. Those few over privileged whom were so  spoiled and agreed with that they found to be in the midst of everything anyone could want was the loneliest and saddest place to be.

So, the equality we have found ourselves working towards since the ease of technology is the pleasure to be as ‘bored as an over rich  person with no imagination nor accountability’. Certainly not what our 1950’s forebears had in mind.

I think we need to look about us and say, “how wonderful, look at all this technology, it can aide me to have a life I choose to make” then put the phone in your handbag until you NEED it. Talk to the person in front of you WITHOUT also texting someone else. Use your computer to research, write, and meet up in our digital community, but then shut it off and go cook, sew, bake, paint, read, hug your spouse or child. Take a walk or ride your bike. Have a life you WANT to express online on your blog. Really, can it be very interesting to read “I sat in front of my computer all day today. I talked and texted. Didn’t get anything done all day. So tired and frustrated with life, I wonder why?” because I can tell you why, Too much of a good thing is bad.

So, I don’t know if you agree with me or think me mad, but I honestly feel as if we should embrace the positive elements of the modern world to help us create and make a life we can be proud of, not just as a means to distract us, entertain us, and then express how bored, lazy, pointless we are. I really have felt since my 1955 journey that I am excited to use the technology, but to keep it in its proper place.

And on that note, here is my comic/drawing for today. (Click on it to read)


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