I’m told that I’m a funny guy and over the coming months I’m going to tell you some funny things. I’m going to be looking fairly hard at people and situations in our lives. Some of what I say may push against your comfort zones which can be awkward at times. Now awkward can still be funny, but it can also make you squirm a bit. (Squirm usually isn’t all that funny, but it can make you think.) So if I share some stuff here that helps make you think, is thinking going to be all that funny? (I’ve got to lie down. I’m already in over my head. What does blog stand for again?)
I am at a stage in life when most of us would have thought we were closer to understanding things. Not just the general everyday stuff like how my toaster oven can’t be on when the coffee maker is brewing or it throws the breaker, how to keep the paperboy on friendly terms so he doesn’t leave my newspaper in the rain or when to say “no” to that last late night glass of wine or shot of booze knowing what tomorrow will look like if I don’t. I mean the other intangible stuff such as how astonishingly beautiful nature and art and youth can truly be, what we can do as individuals to make our world a better place and how to make our small daily contributions to the universal story. Unfortunately, however this sense of blissful understanding has not graciously showed up yet. (This means that I’m not in the running for a shot at the Dalai Lama’s job.)
I guess the best place to start this dialogue with you is in the past, the good ole times. Back in the day I think that things in our daily lives seemed more defined. There were basic routines that really didn’t overlap onto each other. These included getting out of bed, toiletries, dressing, breakfast (the most important meal of your day) a contemplative ride to work and after work the decompression process of the ride back home allowing you to adjust from the highly charged workplace environment to that of a loving family and some enjoyable, and often amusing television programming such as, Father Knows Best or Mr. Ed The Talking Horse.
So now let’s fast forward to today. The lines have blurred. (That’s being too kind. Chaos rules our every waking moment.) We owe this to being connected. We are all engulfed in a fast moving electrically charged current of information. I’ve been watching this evolve and the culprit isn’t the science itself, it’s the miniaturization of everything. Portability is the problem. Radios and televisions were once clunky unwieldy boxes that took two strong men in coveralls with brusque old world accents to move from one room to the next. Now this information is all available on your wafer thin, palm sized phone. As soon as we could take the actual machinery of mass communications with us it became our master. We are enslaved, but by what? (I’m afraid for the most part by chatty friends reaching out across those once pastoral personal boundaries. They now are constantly tugging at our sleeves. Come on out and play.) The annoying kid next door or neighbour that once came pounding on your front door interrupting the tranquil intimacy of a family meal is now in the ether leaving us without the protection of our growling Doberman. They’re all here now, literally within us. (I think that’s the squirmy part. It’s a whole new take on Invasion of The Body Snatchers)