"if an object or expression can bring about, within us, a sense of serene melancholy and a spiritual longing, then that object could be said to be wabi-sabi." -Wabi Sabi: The Japanese Art of Impermanence(2003)

Your Attention Please

i used to blog frequently. until twitter came along. now, i micro-blog. it is too easy. and i don’t have to spend time to think.

the world is getting faster and more concise with each passing day, hour and minute. Instant gratification is not merely relished, it’s demanded. Writing this a few years ago would have taken up all my concentration. Today, my mind somersaults through a plethora of activities, a dozen times a minute as i ‘Alt-Tab’ my way through the open windows before i manage to complete one sentence. my attention span has been reduced to that of a gnat. Does all this context switching affect my writing? maybe. for better or worse? can’t say. i know for a fact that my writing is certainly different when i write the old-fashioned way, than when i type.

i feel restless if i don’t click on the ‘You have a new mail’ alert, the moment it pops up. or if the hourglass pointer shows up for more than a few seconds. my irritation is demonstrated as violently shake the mouse as if doing that would somehow cause it to go away. one word: ADD.

the disorder seems contagious. ppl are always on the edge and are loosing it at the drop of a hat. they can’t sit still for more than a few minutes…unless they’re watching TV, in case of which, they can stare at it for hours without moving a muscle (well, except the thumb to switch channels). which brings us to another important observation: ppl (including me) are becoming lazier. most would choose activities like sleeping, watching TV and thinking in decreasing order of priority, given a choice. working out doesn’t even make the list anymore. reading books? forget it… takes too much time and efforts. and who reads books anyways? kindle? sure, just can’t seem to focus on reading one, when the news feeds are updated every other minute. i gotta stay updated on the latest celebrity gossip, you know? it’s pretty popular at the water cooler.

everyone always has had a choice. except, now the choice has gone from choosing between reading one or other to choosing whether to read or zone out. the scary part is, in most of the cases today, it’s the latter that gets chosen.

are we all becoming so poor that we can’t even pay attention?

or is it the other way round? in today’s attention economy, my attention span became one of the most coveted commodity as everyone tried really hard to get my attention. pretty soon, they were all shouting at the top of their lungs clamoring to get my attention. initially, i ignored them. over time, i turned deaf.

next on the list is finding some techniques to combat the impulses my brain so that i can …hey, it’s Friday! wonder what the weather is like over the weekend.

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