Oh my god, how much do I need this? Freedom. It's such a hilarious contradiction, that "freedom" is to be found in restriction, but I get it. I soooo get it. Need it. Need to be saved from myself, from wi-fi. And the timing couldn't be more perfect. Yesterday my facebook status read:
"Laini Taylor tried writing by HAND this morning, in a NOTEBOOK, just to escape the siren song of wireless internet and all its many, many distractions. As soon as I gave in and cracked open my computer, I was swept away on a tide of distraction."
I lamented to Stephanie this morning in an email how I can feel my attention span atrophying these days, how I can be engrossed in what I am writing and still get a sudden irresistible urge to check my email or my blog. It's insidious. I've considered disconnecting my wi-fi, but not seriously, because yo, I love my wi-fi. But something has to happen!
And then today, just NOW, I came across this headline article on Salon.com, when I was on one of those inexplicable forays away from my work, right in the middle of a paragraph. A paragraph in which someone was dying for god's sake, and I just left him there, clutching at a wound (a wound so hopeless and gruesome that trying to hold it closed is like "gathering up a handful of meat scraps to fling to a dog") to check my blog, which I knew would have no new comments, and jeez, even if it did, so what? I mean: dying! Meat scraps! Ick! Awful! Why didn't that hold my attention?
And then I saw it. Salvation. Freedom. A free application designed for Macs to disable wireless networking for a specified amount of time (from one minute to eight hours, it's up to you) -- so you can Get. Some. Work. Done.
Halleluja!! Thank you, Fred Stutzman!
How funny, how totally ironic, that I came here to blog about this instead of just doing it! I hover in fear at the edge of my soon-to-be-frozen networking. Can I do it? Can I live this way? Recently our horrible internet provider disconnected us twice in one week because of their own insistent clerical errors, and we were internetless for a couple of days. We were helpless as kittens. We had to go to a gas station to buy a map, so we could find a wedding in our own city -- we couldn't google it and we didn't even own a map! A zillion things came up every minute that we needed to look up. We had been thrust into the dark ages. It was so unsettling.
And yet, I see my brain changing. Seriously. Pathways are being altered in there. My attention span is being materially damaged. I think about kids growing up in this technological age, and wonder what we might do about our own (incipient and future offspring), how to nurture their attention spans (books, puzzles, drawing, puppet theaters) and still have a realistic balance with technology that will not leave them behind their peers (thinking of Feed, and the tragic consequences to the girl whose parents tried to nurture her brain free of invasive technology). Frick. What to do?
Well, for today, I'm going to try this Freedom thing. It'll be like writing by hand in a notebook, as I did yesterday, but without the cramping and bad handwriting! Ha ha. It's hilarious how excited I am about this. Gleeful. I'll let you know how it goes:-)