Day 3, (The Internet’s Perils)

Queens Boulevard @ 65th Place

Cameraphone Image Safari

4-10-11 6:49am
Where to begin. I sat down five minutes ago and the tab I had left open distracted me with photos of prostitutes arrests.  Like the Daily News Crime section, I think there’s an element in the modern subject (I’m trying to implicate more than myself here) that derives some sort of pleasure out of the misfortune of others.  We love to hurl lofty judgement of people when they get caught doing bad things.  Right now the trial of the cops who raped the drunk woman they brought home come to mind. In other cases it is something more pedestrian, like a killing over sneakers, reputation, a robbery or, more rarely, a (wo)man. In some cases I like to empathize with the criminals, trying to understand how a mother ties up her child and starves her to death (I’ll call that the “Misti madness”); I try and track back the insane thinking to something selfish that became a “logical solution” to an immediate problem.   I have been there, but a) my selfish-logic never involved hurting people or taking their things because of my lack of ambition when high and b) I was, generally, too lazy when these schemes appeared to me in my selfish, fevered, stupid mind and c) I never got caught.

Like the Daily News crime section my phone has also distracted me, first by telling me someone (Mason?) has been in my iTunes account and that I won “photo of the Day for NYC” with a stencil “Dream is Destiny.” For which I had originally posted this:
“Authority fails/
To realize that for us/
‘Dream is Destiny'”/

Which is just another illustration of how distracted I can become with all of this internet technology.  I am sure that I have wasted at least a half an hour of my 45 minutes of writing time fucking around with the internet, my phone, coffee and other negocios seglares (secular affairs according to the corrupt priest in Lazarillo de Tormes).

What I really wanted to do was write this morning.  I think that my best writing has to come from a practice of writing.  Write for 45 minutes is the goal.  I want to just do it for a while here in my journal, but soon I want to turn to academic writing and them some creative writing.  But if I keep letting my phone and its instant (publishing) gratification distract me I will never get anything done.  Of course this might be the case, that I am just a simple worker bee with delusions of grandeur.  I want to be F. Scott Fitzgerald, but I don’t want to spend the time, energy, effort or ego to do it.  Strangely, I have to say that it is the last one that I think might be really holding me back.  I am afraid of rejection (which I’ve gotten plenty of).  So I don’t re-read all of my haikus because I’m afraid that if I really try I will be rejected again, and my ego is unwilling to face that; so I hide behind the distracted laziness of tweeting more rather than reflecting, collecting and editing the tweets I have for possible advancement.

Now I’m getting somewhere. …  Also I think I should try to quit my phone and give up on the instant gratification (I like this phrase “time, energy, effort [&] ego”). The smartphone is a window into “away.”  It is a window into related thoughts, history and other people’s predictions.  It is rarely ever the vehicle for longer contemplative exploration.  It is nice to be able to fact-check elsewhere, but it is not required for exploration of your thinking.  I had a related thought as I watched someone check their iPhone as they waited in their car fro someone or something: I want to be less “productive.” “productive” in the modern capitalist state sense where I can check email from students, status updates from friends and tweets from interesting and poetic strangers.  All of these distract me from myself.  They keep me from having long, contemplative and thoughtful meditations on life, work or the world.

This has been a total wasted day writing.


4 responses to “Day 3, (The Internet’s Perils)

  1. Ah the smart phone. You know, there really is a price to pay for convenience. And it seems the price you are paying is your creativity.

    In odd way, that’s the reasoning in my head why I never majored in English. I felt majoring in English would be convenient, not a challenge, not stepping out of my box . Also, i felt all the dictating and rules and class room etiquette would just KILL the creativity ( like it did when I was in Hunter College and majoring in Women Studies).

    But back to the topic, The day is young. I think as we get older( this coming from a young 22 year old lol), settle in our lives ( family, work etc) it’s easier and easier to fall into habits and routine and make excuses to avoid leisure time . Maybe you need a whole change of routine and a fresh mindset.

    I know we all fear rejection. It took me almost a year to be willing to even let people LOOK at my writings and then another year of my high school teachers impatiently prompting me to submit my poetry to things. I finally submitted to New York Civil Liberties and won top 5 , 500 bucks. Why not start small to build back that confidence and overcome the fear of rejection. Hey why not organize a promotional lit mag in LaGuardia? All by the staff there, in hopes to support and encourage students to express their creativity? That’s a nice little way to exhibit some work without fear of rejection…

    • Tasha, that’s a great idea, but I am not well organized or driven to promote and construct institutions. But that is an idea: students edit faculty work (be a shitload of work though).
      Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T

  2. You make me recall the glare from any of my daughters when they thought I was about to say (again?), “Money, time, spirit and energy–that’s all you need.”

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