Once upon a time, I used to love those early mornings sipping coffee reading the New York Times. And I mean the actual newspaper not the www.nytimes.com. By fluke, I got my hands on an actual paper again this morning. I fought the urge to put it aside and open my laptop and literally forced myself to sit and read the paper before getting on with emails and my online life and business.
I did enjoy it. The physical act of holding the newspaper and getting absorbed in its ink infused canvas vs. the computer screen is different. While I like it, I no longer find it that attractive or compelling enough to actually spend the time doing it. And at the same time, I had to exercise self-discipline.
My silent, tightly closed-lid laptop was staring up at me waiting to play, show me what’s new, cajole me, tease me, teach me things. I poignantly turned my head and held the huge paper (why is it so disproportionately big really?) struggling with its pages. I was out of practice actually turning and folding these large paper sheets. Such an unnatural and complicated physicality to simply read!
But, I was determined. I realized that I was simply scanning the articles – since I had already read the printed “news” online last night. Even the analysis and the editorials come to me in RSS feeds as they are published – so, there was no newness in the process. I was taking a trip down memory lane, more than I was actually “reading” the paper. Plus, I had this nagging little voice in my head prompting me to see my emails instead of “wasting” time reading the by now old news on a piece of paper.
OK, OK…I am not that young (or that old for all it matters) to be in the millennial generation of whiz kids who live, breathe and think on line. But, I am curious, Christopher Columbus reincarnate, always exploring, digging, uncovering, discovering and peeling off the layers of world secrets, wonders, and miracles.
And, the old ways, the ways we “used to do” things have gotten faster and different. Some will argue that these new ways are not better.The point is that once again – we choose.
And that freedom to make the choice simply makes me smile – whatever the choice – the freedom to do so is to me, the thing that matters the most!