Two weeks ago, I quit. Cold turkey.
I am not a smoker or a drinker. I don’t use drugs and will cut myself off from caffeine if I feel myself becoming too dependent on it. That’s the point really: I don’t do addiction because I don’t like losing control. But if 2014 has taught me anything, it is that nothing is ever under control for long, and that addiction can sneak up on you when you least expect it. Continue Reading
This is hardly the first time this blog talks about love. Nor will it likely be the last. Love is that mysterious thing, elusive and difficult to grasp, even when you’re in it and especially when you’re out of it.
But being that this blog is all about the past, present and future, about change and technology and ranges of intangible human emotion and ways in which they’re all connected, love and its ever-changing rituals (and therefore our ever-changing attempts to understand it) seemed an apt topic. Continue Reading
Reading Brian Christian’s “The Most Human Human” makes me think not only of what it means to be human, but how technology is ever defining us as a species – the more technologically advanced we become, the deeper we delve into questions of the soul, of human nature. Christian talks about chatbots and the effort to randomize chats with programs like Chatroulette – but I remember the age of random chats with real people. Which of course took me back to the early days of the Internet, to the serendipity that seemed to define the ’90’s. Continue Reading
Does time exist under the bubble of our own blue atmosphere? A way to corral events and defuse chaos so that, as famously stated by Raymond Cummings in his 1922 novel The Girl in the Golden Atom, “Time….is what keeps everything from happening all at once.”?
We complain about its constraints and apply a certain mysticism to its routine ticks. The sitcom How I Met Your Mother claims “nothing good happens after 2 a.m.” Analog clocks are displayed in stores always set at 10 past 10 – the common thinking behind this is that a) the perfect symmetry makes more people buy them, and b) mentally, we perceive clocks at 10 past 10 to look “happy,” as if they’re smiling mysteriously, enigmatically, amongst an array of numbers (the Mona Lisa of analog). Paranormal aficionados believe that 3 a.m. is prime haunting time. And the slam poet Rives expostulates at length about the wonky surreal coincidences of 4 a.m.
Memory loss does funny things to people. In Radiolab’s podcast “Loops,” a woman talks about having Transient Global Amnesia – a form of temporary amnesia in which a person loses the ability to form new memories, an affliction that lasts up to 24 hours and which has no known cause. For 3 or 4 hours, her brain was stuck on a 90 second loops – she would ask the same sets of questions of her daughter, and make the same comments and observations for 90 seconds before her brain reset and began again, from the beginning. Once the brain starts to recover however, the loops of time grow longer….90 seconds to 5 minutes to half an hour to a day, until the brain recovers enough to remember things once more.