Thursday, April 25, 2013

Books are destroying everything.

Setting: the century following Gutenberg.
People are becoming losers. It's pathetic. Before, people talked to each other, but now they're all hunched over with their faces buried in these devices. Go outside. Play. Fuck.

It's like an addiction. It's like drunkenness. And it's everywhere. It was ok when people had one book, but now words are everywhere. Now, you go to the university, and you're given text. You go to the barbershop and it's on the wall, assaulting you with commercial offers. People are carrying these portable "newspapers" and you can see them just sitting there like zombies in the plaza, ignoring everyone around them, with their faces buried in words.

I don't know what's going to come of it. It seems like people are wasting their whole lives.

Every Luddite has a point. Obesity is a good enough reason to temper your relationship to little pages and screens.

But when I hear an abstainer, I worry. My life would be nothing without facebook. If facebook hasn't made you a completely different person with a vastly more fulfilling life, I should teach you how to use it (and you should sign up for Graph Search.)

Have we given up our humanity by redefining our relationships according to the constraints of the present technology? Sometimes. Let's work on changing the constraints.

Do we look like fools hunched over little screens all day? Yeah. Let's work on that too.

I (non-sarcastically) still haven't been convinced that taking in language through the eyes is an improvement over the way we evolved to take it in. So there are things on our civilizational to-do list, if we want to have our cake and eat it too. But for God's sake man, have some cake.

History, and money, and penicillin, were on the side of the people who let their kids learn to read.

1 comment:

  1. Hey man, sign me up for your Life-Changing FB Life-Fulfiller class. Unless of course I somehow misread the point of the whole article and that was somehow ironic.

    It kind of seems that way. But I'd rather take that chance.