I’ve been noticing lately that there seems to have been a subtle shift, socially, from the whole “technology will save us!” mentality to something more along the lines of “maybe technology is slowly killing us!” We’re being encouraged from every side (well, every side but the one bordered by Big Grocery and Big Oil, perhaps) to eat food that we can recognize and know from whence it came, to clean with products that don’t contain formaldehyde, to turn off the Blackberrys and turn our backs on Twitter and hang our laundry to dry in the great outdoors. I’m certainly not immune to it, and I’m trying to find ways to embrace this line of thought in my own life because, you know, there’s something very satisfying about it.
I tend to complicate things unnecessarily with to-do lists and anxiety and thoughts of details and deadlines, but I’m learning – gradually – to find the joy of simpler things. I know that sounds like something that should be cross-stitched and hung above a floral-printed couch in your grandmother’s house, but I stand by it, because I think it’s important to say even if I haven’t said it very eloquently. It’s maybe easier for me to say this since I can (to some degree) set my own schedule and I don’t have kids to chase after, but I don’t like the way we live our lives, running from meetings to appointments, doing our best to make sure our lawns don’t look like Nicolas Cage’s head before the hairplugs really grabbed on, carving out a few hours to watch keep up with a t.v. schedule that we’ve ascribed some sort of weird urgency to, never knowing our neighbours, never noticing or savouring the sacred moments because we’re already on our way to devouring the next one. (more…)
I generally support the law that requires high school students to perform a required number of hours of community service in order to graduate. I think it’s a good idea for a number of reasons, the most recent reason (and my new favourite) being as follows: yesterday, the doorbell rang while Mike and I were making dinner. Mike went to answer it while I continued to keep an eye on the stove. I heard some mumbling coming from the front hall, which Mike returned to the kitchen to inform me was a young guy asking if we wanted to support the Heart & Stroke foundation, “a great cause to help people who can’t afford strokes.”
That scenario is ripe for a lot of discussion about kids today, with their rock and/or roll music, their sideburns, their frequent and persistent lack of global understanding, and the fact that most of them only get involved in their communities when it’s required by law, but I’ll leave it at this: it’s a good thing that Mike was the one to answer the door, because I’m afraid that if it had been me, I would have fallen over laughing and then given the kid all the money in my wallet.
I just realized I haven’t blogged at all this week. I also haven’t done much of anything else that would be interesting enough to report on. I’m probably going to kick myself for this later, sending this thought out into the ether, because I know a lot of people think that the life of the freelancer is about the easiest one there is and I tell them it’s not true, but I think I’m going to say it anyway. Most of the time it isn’t true – there are peaks and valleys the same as everything else – but every once in a while one of the valleys comes at the right time and that’s okay. (more…)
This has been a wonderfully quiet, low-key, peaceful sort of week, so I’m running a little short of inspiration for the blog. In lieu of a regular post, please enjoy this Friday haiku, inspired by recent shocking real-life events:
The sun was shining
‘Till I turned the sprinkler on
Look! I made it rain.
This morning, I woke up without my alarm (something that is pretty much unheard of around these parts, conflicted as my love/hate relationship with sleep tends to be) and next to a soft, squishy, warm orange cat that was as happy to see me as I was to see him. A client emailed me back the exact information I needed at the exact time I needed it, allowing me to work quickly and enthusiastically on a part of his project I was hoping to complete today. I took a 10-minute break to read a book on the deck and throw a ball for the dog (one of the tennis balls that keeps mysteriously appearing in our yard, likely thanks to the dog-less little girls next door who love Daisy perhaps as much as we do) and another 10-minute break to spin around my neighbourhood – quickly and breathlessly and inefficient-but-enthusiastically – on my bike. (more…)