“We are becoming the servants in thought, as in action, of the machine we have created to serve us.” - John Kenneth Galbraith
All the writers I meet seem to spend a lot of time on the internet. I am no exception. Between researching, emailing, visiting other blogs and socializing on Facebook or Twitter, the hours of the day zoom by. Many times I admonish myself in hopes that I’ll get up and do something a bit more productive such as grocery shopping, housework or actually working on a manuscript. I, however, am quite adept at ignoring my own warnings.
I bring this up because next week I am taking a trip and leaving my computer behind. Since I do not have an iPhone or some other way of accessing the internet, I will be going cold turkey. The closer the date looms, the more often I find myself breaking out in a cold sweat wondering if I can do it.
Internet Addiction Disorder (IAD) is serious problem for many people. Marriages have been destroyed by it and people have lost their jobs over it. There is an in-depth site call netaddiction.com that’s dedicated to helping those with major internet issues. On this site there’s a test to help determine whether or not you have a problem. I took the test. My results show that though I may sometimes spend a little too much time on the internet, I’m actually an average online user and have control over my usage. Whew!
That means I can go ahead with my trip instead of checking myself into the Internet Addiction Center that recently opened near Seattle. There’s an interesting article on Breibart.com which talks about ReStart. ReStart claims to be the first such center in America. It is suitably located near the Redmond headquarters of Microsoft. Open since July, their 45-day, $14,000.00 program is intended to help people wean themselves from pathological computer use, including obsessive use of video games, texting, Facebook, eBay, Twitter and other time-killers. (I can’t help but wonder if the price tag is a big part of the cure—like a type of shock treatment.)
So on Wednesday I’ll leave this 90 degree sunny paradise I call home to travel to Traverse City, Michigan. I’m cold just thinking about it. However, it should be fun. It’s a reunion with a group of ladies I played Mah Jongg with when I lived in Illinois. That was over five years ago so we have a lot of catching up to do.
However, I will be taking time out on Friday, October 16 to do a book signing at Horizon Books at 243 E. Front Street, Traverse City from 3 to 5 PM. I hope if any of you are in the area, you’ll stop by. Or, if you know someone in the area, I’d appreciate you passing the word along.
On Thursday (Oct. 15), guest blogger Jay Luke will be stopping by to discuss the topic of writing about history. He is the author of When Coal Was Queen: The History of the Queen City - Olyphant, Pennsylvania. Jay is a multi-talented painter, musician and writer. As a project engineer of the Olyphant Coal Miner Memorial Association, he has delved deeply into the origins of the area and the forgotten histories of the towns around him. I hope you’ll make plans to visit.
Thanks for stopping by.
Tags: Galbraith, internet addiction, IAD, ReStart, Horizon Books, Traverse City, Mah Jongg,