The Candy Apple
Taking a Break
Now and then, it’s a good idea to step back and take a break from our usual patterns. Often we don’t realize we have gotten ourselves into negative habits, until we are forced to stop them for a while.
A friend lost his home Internet access for a month recently, and he learned something about himself. He learned he had been spending way too much time online, and not enough time doing household stuff that needed doing. He was not harming anyone else, but it was a good lesson he will keep in mind once he gets his immediate problem solved.
The problem was a blown Ethernet port on a three-year-old iMac. He thinks lightning hit his building the night it went out. It took a while to diagnose the problem, because the unit itself works fine. The ISP replaced the modem and found no problems. Once he finally received a diagnosis, he had a decision to make: replace the Ethernet port for $400; try a $32 USB Ethernet adapter (which we did, before failing to figure out its drivers); make do with a friend’s spare G3 until the tax-free holiday comes around and then…buy an iBook; or, go without home access altogether. He is mulling the final two options as I write this.
He is entranced with the iBook, its portability and durability and speed. The iBook has a lot to offer, including recovering the desk space the iMac has been chewing up all this time.
The other option, though, is a return to time spent reading books instead of message board posts. It would mean more long walks around the neighborhood, and fewer hours wasted reading about stocks he will never buy.
I told him I understood the addiction concept. When I’m out of town, I find myself searching for a public library or a 24-hour Kinko’s print store so I can get online. I want to vacuum all the spam out of my accounts before I get home, and I like to check in with my message board buddies every few days. It is odd, being disconnected from them.
It is sometimes very cleansing, though, to be not so connected all the time, and not to stay on top of the e-mail. Part of the point of a vacation is to get away from the ordinary, and to breathe. I sort of hope my friend chooses the no-computer option, for a while anyway.
Also in This Series
- On Temptation · July 2010
- Beyond Pen Pals · July 2007
- Just Because We Can Do a Thing, Does Not Mean We Should Do a Thing · March 2006
- Google Tells Big Brother to Take a Hike · February 2006
- Wikipedia Is Not the Lovefest We Thought · January 2006
- Star Trek Gadgets Have Arrived · December 2005
- The Silver Screen Keeps Shrinking · October 2005
- It’s Just Business · July 2005
- Age Has Its Advantages · June 2005
- Complete Archive