Disconnect, Brotato

By Thomas Zhang:

Recently, I’ve decided to spend less time online, less time on Facebook, less time instant messaging, and less time obsessively checking my email.

On any given day, I can spend up to two hours partaking in these vacuous activities, and I’d like to see what life
is like without them. To me, these pastimes only marginally enhance my day-to-day experiences. Let’s be honest as well: at seventeen, I’m not nearly important enough to warrant being available 24/7, all day, every day. I would dare say this applies to many of us.

So far, the experience has been great. I’ve been unbelievably productive. I save hours every day which I would
have otherwise wasted online, and I can use this time to follow pursuits that I actually enjoy. For example, I’ve been able to spend much more time at home reading, a task that has been left unchecked on my to-do list for far too long.
However, I’m beginning to hear this from my peers:

BRO, YOU HAVEN’T CHECKED YOUR FACEBOOK OR CHECKED YOUR EMAIL OR CHECKED YOUR
PHONE OR BEEN ON GOOGLE TALK, MSN, SKYPE, OR FACEBOOK MESSENGER ALL DAY. WHAT
IS WRONG WITH YOU? WHY ARE YOU IGNORING ME BRO? WHY ARE YOU SO ANTISOCIAL?

Oh. Hi there. I’m sorry; I didn’t check my email today. I didn’t know I was obligated to vigilantly monitor my
inbox every waking moment in case I receive a most desired message from your royal highness hiney. In fact, as far as I’m concerned, I have no obligation to spend hours of my time online. I’m not sure why everyone is so incensed. It is as though they have an egotistical delusion of grandeur, brought on by stroking their ego through countless Facebook status updates and tweets. Perhaps it is just me. Though seriously, if you really needed to talk to me, and I really wanted you to be able to communicate with me, I would have given you my phone number and you would have been able to call me. It is so odd that these days, everyone is so hesitant to pick up the phone and call someone to chat.

Try unplugging from the Internet. Disconnect. Don’t be a part of that system. You certainly don’t need it. Who
knows? You might even finish that novel you need to read for English class, or your darn TPCASSTT.

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