20080715

blackouts

Last night we had a blackout and a thunderstorm. Even the phones were dead. I was hanging out with my girlfriend at the time. I thought it was exciting. She thought it was a profound reminder of how much we rely on technology.

It struck me then that every five minutes we're reminded how much we rely on technology. It's nothing new. It's not even interesting anymore. Yes, technology is convenient. Yes, sometimes it breaks and we have to rely on more archaic methods. This is nothing new. It isn't paradigm-altering. I'm going to go right back to using my laptop and cell phone and electric lights when this is all over, I said.

But you can't now, she said. Doesn't that make you feel enslaved to technology? You're stuck with candles and you can't call anyone and you have to write on paper.

I tried to explain that I was really just enjoying myself with the candles, but she was bent on believing that there was something important to be learned from this. I think it's this: we have too much time to wax existential when our technology fails us, and not enough drive to just run with it, or find a solution.

3 comments:

Janie Rushing said...

I love this.

Should people have complained about their typewriters and party lines? In twenty years we'll be vintage off-colour, as well.

Rob said...

One of my hobbies when people start talking about worlds without technology during a blacklight is pulling out my wind-up LED flashlight. I want to get one of the OLPC laptops with the foot-powered chargers, too.

I never comment. I just use them with a smug grin on my face.

Rob said...

Also, during a black/out/.