My parents have bad ideas.
Last week, I was told that I was becoming
a computer “addict.” Apparently my “addiction,” while not
sufficiently deleterious to my health or mental caliber, was
becoming enough of a problem that my dear guardians found it
necessary to threaten me with infringement of certain
liberties of mine unless I revoked said addictive
activities. Like, say, instant messaging. They insisted that
an overdose of these small, impersonal conversations would
eventually deprive me of any semblance of intelligence I
had. And random Wikipedia-ing. Ah, yes. This is my recent
favorite; just start with one Wikipedia search term and
follow through links till you’re absolutely bored/satiated.
Unfortunately, my parents said that this was a certain waste
So, basically I argued back. Come on,
mother, I’m actually learning things! Believe me! This
Wikipedia stuff is gold! Not a joke. And the AIM
conversations? Intellectual debates and exegeses only, I
Somehow they didn’t buy that. Father
started looking sort of nostalgic and said that in his day
they didn’t mess around with this impersonal mode of
communication. Indeed, they all wrote lovely letters and
signed off with flourishes, running, blushing and excited,
to carefully fold and envelope their letter. Oh, and the
stamping! Yay! Hooray for stamps!
Anyway, this led mother to prompt me to
write a letter. Ha! I scoffed and shook my head. Their
primitive minds. Really!
But, as soon as they left the room,
disgruntled and annoyed, my eyes couldn’t help but peek from
the corners at a sheaf of paper at the edge of my desk. And
at that inviting pen lolling on its side. It was so shiny!
Slowly, I took a slice of paper and let
my fingers grasp the shiny, shiny pen. Humm....I’d write a
letter...to who? A relative? No. Too strange. A friend? Even
stranger. My parents? Ha!
Me! Right, so I’d write a lovely letter
to lovely me. Excited in spite of myself and giggling with
anticipation, I set forth to convey my brilliant and
undoubtedly entertaining news and ideas to myself. I started
simply with a “Dear Megha...” and then halted and thought.
What am I telling myself? Hmm...I could discuss my day. With
So, I start. My bobbing shiny pen swishes
back and forth like a laser, and my fingers push down upon
the body of the pen. Inky black and bulbous words spew out
of the pen, and I lumber through my day for a second time,
adding flourishes and dressing as I go.
How exciting! The sliding pen against the
smooth paper and the satisfying pause to dot “i”s and cross
“t”s. And I just wrote and wrote endlessly. Marvelous!
...Meh. After a while it all wore off. My
hand became cramped mid-page and I let my pen clatter down
on the desk with a groan. I looked down at the silly words
on my paper and the useless pen rolling around frivolously
on the desk. And the inviting glow of the computer screen
beckoned me softly...
And I gave up letter writing forever.
Moral of the story: I am a slave to my computer.