Having spent a few years teaching history, I often found myself reminding students that previous generations got along just fine without a particular device or gizmo.
The myth that drives our culture today is that we need more tools to do more things more quickly. Now, when it comes to paying bills online as opposed to writing out checks and placing stamps on envelopes, I am all for such innovation. But the double-edged sword that is modern technology drives us to practically hyperventilate when things aren’t moving quickly enough for our liking. We need it now, now, now and when our demands for the immediate are not met, our internal pressure cooker clicks on.
While I struggle to combat such tendencies, I am not as successful as I would like to be. For example, I am able to verify any time I wish my current book sales. This may sound like a blessing, but it is so easy for this to lead to thrice-daily checking of numbers that probably should be examined, at the most, weekly for the first month and then once a month thereafter. Fixating on how many sales have, or have not, been recorded can quickly transform someone from a diligent supervisor of their work to an obsessive person needing to feast on data like whales dine on krill.
There is, and always has been, a value in being patient in our world of instant gratification. I was just never very good at learning that lesson.
Toward that end, here’s to becoming a “tortoise” in this hare-brained world.
I've been writing stories and taking photos since I was old enough to hold a pencil and stand behind a tripod.