It is Obvious

Chris Rick has got altogether too much to say

Archive for January, 2016

At the tone…

Posted by chrisrick13 on January 10, 2016

It is obvious: a lot of bad things are addictive

I left my phone at home.  Kept checking my pocket to see if it was there but it did not help and I had to face up to a day without a phone.  Managed the first 40 years of my life without one so I ought to be able to manage another day.

Of course there was a phone at work and webmail.  So I made contact with everyone that matters.  The biggest inconvenience was that I could not easily arrange a lift home from the station.  A bus and a short walk does it so what is the big deal?

All that has happened is that I have optimised my life based on the environment I am in.  I can reduce the amount of planning I have to do as I can arrange last minute stuff at the last minute.  I do not have to gather information in advance of using it as I can get it when I need it.  I can cope with disruptions and change.

I remember the first time I worked away from home.  I was isolated.  A stranger in a strange land.  The telephone box gave me social contact with my family…at seven in the evening for a few minutes.  It kept me sane.  Now I can do it the moment I need it and give it when it is needed.

I’m too old to need to maintain a presence in a social network.  I don’t need to know about a lot of stuff that is happening.  I can grab information I need, or think I need, from other sources when I choose.

I had a similar experience in the USA last week.  My phone was not interested in talking to anyone.  Just saved me money on pointless calls.  There was decent internet access in the hotel.  So it was not missed.  But it did feel odd.

I’m so close to getting rid of my tv but I never will even though I watch very little.  I really do not need my own car.  I can easily manage with legs, taxis and hire cars.  Not as convenient but probably cheaper.  Would need a phone though!  I won’t do it.  I know I won’t.

That is the problem.  I want small amounts of some of these things but then get sucked into a different and bigger relationship.  It is like an addiction: all or nothing – there is nothing in between.

There is an argument I have made here before that Islamic fundamentalism will be defeated by the internet which makes everyone aware of MacDonalds, Levi, Facebook and freedom.  The first thing you see when problems are reported from China are the secret police putting their hands on camera lenses.  There are too many cameras now.  We will soon see reporters with camera men and the big camera when it is all being filmed from a button on the reporter’s coat.  With the great internet wall of China things are slow.  The holes are appearing though.  It will be slower with Islamic fundamentalism but it is inexorable.


It is obvious: a lot of bad things are addictive and a few good ones as well


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