Forty-Something Years in Ninaland


Our Robotic Reality

The boney hands of a skeleton type on a computer keyboard

The boney hands of a skeleton type on a computer keyboard © Phil Date | Dreamstime Stock Photos

So the thing is, I’m sitting here like an idiot because I have to grade a bunch of papers, but the website I grade them on is not working and I can’t figure how to download the papers. Boo hoo. It’s like time stopped because my computer isn’t doing what it’s told. I should have just asked for hard copies, but grading on the computer is much easier and I don’t have to carry around a bunch of papers.

I mean I’m saving trees and stuff. But I’m turning into a machine. I stare at this machine far more than I would like to. I like this contraption far more than I will admit. When the machine doesn’t do what I want it to do, I complain, I whine. This computer could be my best friend, unfortunately.

Next in line is my iPhone. I probably don’t know how to use half of its functions, yet I’m still satisfied that I have this intelligent little thing hanging out with me. Yup it’s just the gadgets and me.

All of a sudden, I feel incredibly sad. Sad that I spend more time with computers than I do with people. That is a pity. What the fuck am I doing with my life? I should get off of here, shut off the T.V. power off my phone and I don’t know, hang out with a friend. Have a conversation.

What are we doing here people, this is the kind of future we dreaded. The reason I’m continuing to talk on the very machine, which I am criticizing, is that is a forum for me to speak. I will not deny the good in life that technology has brought.

But when we look at Facebook and all we see are happy families and faces, we wonder is it making us feel bad about ourselves? I personally throw all my dirty laundry on Facebook via my blog. I talk about my mental health, my insecurities, and my shame.

I don’t necessarily want to display my worst on the web. But I want, to be honest when I write. However, I control my level of honesty. I mean I could tell you my worst fear is dying completely alone. But I don’t reveal who I’m dating or like the fact that I had no clean underwear today so I’m going commando. I realize I just revealed that it’s an example of how far we can go into people’s private lives.

I think people might think that I don’t have any privacy because I will write about anything. Not true. I don’t write about people I love and their issues. I don’t write about my family issues. I don’t reveal the inner workings of my clan. I try to keep my tribe’s talk out of the spotlight.

On another note, did you see Spotlight? It was a great movie, it deserved best picture. It revealed the inner workings of sin. Real sin. The kind you actually go to hell for. I bring this up in this particular piece of work to draw the similarity between the sex scandals in the Church with the scandal in our lives.

The real scandal is that we are more in love with our things than we are our people. This is a sin, people. I don’t actually believe in hell, except for child molesters, but I believe in karma. We are all sinners. I mean the Bible even says that. I just lied to my father today about something related to my computer. He’s such a nice man. He’s an elderly blind man with heart issues; he doesn’t deserve my dishonesty. Why did I lie about a stupid machine? It was a white lie. (I’m not even going to get into the racial implications of that phrase we use.) I don’t know: lying is convenient. As convenient as technology is. But it is like I chose this computer over him. I will never find enlightenment if I keep lying. My thoughts need to be aligned with my actions. I intend on living the truth. I can’t even speak the truth all the time. But I digress…

What’s wrong with me? It’s not just me is it? What’s wrong with us?

We live and breathe by the machines and gadgetry we have instead of looking people in the eyes and telling them how it really is. I think technology might be taking us further away from being human. It’s helping us lie about what’s important.


© Dawn Hudson | Dreamstime Stock Photos

What does it mean to be human in a world that is so digitally driven? What does it mean to be a person in all this mess? Did you ever see Her; it’s a film about a man who falls in love with a voice on his computer. We are not too far away from that. I mean we might not need people to love anymore: machines might replace hearts. I think they actually do already.

My mom is talking to me right now. She’s telling me about an Indian movie and singing a song from there. It’s cute. It’s real. It’s human. She yells at me when I bring my laptop to the kitchen table and type away while she’s talking to me. Even if she’s talking to me about Indian movies. She knows. She knows better. I’m doing what she hates right now, though.

Mama always knows best. She also tells me that ding on my phone when I get a text message is the most irritating sound she has ever heard in her entire life. We are talking about gun control right now. I don’t remember how it came up. She is a delightful woman, full of spunk and charm. I feel like I’m losing some of my charisma by staring at a screen all day and night.

Ha ha, my mom just asked me to call my dad. He is upstairs. This is what we have come to. And instead of walking upstairs I’m going to call him on my cell phone.

But my parents still like old style talking, shooting the shit, instead of texting or Facebooking. Remember when people used to sit around a fire at night after dinner and just yap. Tell stories and jokes and sing songs.

What has happened to us?

© Studio Dream | Dreamstime Stock Photos

© Studio Dream | Dreamstime Stock Photos

I want so badly to feel the grass on my feet and sit in front of a fire. I know I could go camping, and I would like to do that. But it could be more integrated in my life, this natural living. I drive a car everywhere I go, last night I had to walk a little distance in Royal Oak, a cute little downtown area near me. When I was walking, I was upset I had not parked closer. Why? It wasn’t that cold. There was fresh air and people all around me. I was out with a good friend.

I don’t know how to be anymore. And in the evenings when I’m with my friends and refuse to access my gadgets, I feel a funny withdrawal. My mom said something to me just now and I totally did not hear it, but I nodded yes. This is pathetic. I’m better than this. Stop reading this and go tell someone you love them. I got to go…


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 March 6th, 2016  
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