Tuesday, 16 February 2010

Like losing a leg

My desktop computer is out of action for the time being. Which is extremely annoying, not to mention anxiety-provoking. Most of the stuff I would rather not lose - if it comes to that eventuality - is thankfully on my external hard drive. Music, photos and so on. Not all of it though: some is on the C drive, but if needs be then of course I'll have to do without. Tough luck.

It's a bit worrying just how much I rely on the damn thing: in the morning catching up with the news and weather; in the evening, blogging (though I've been remiss of late in that respect), social networking, catching up with more news, online debates on the Guardian site, emails, music sites and so on and so forth.

Or just having it there in the background: in recent times, when I've ensured that the bulk of my evening is diverted into other activities, it's still useful. For example, I'm immersed in a historical biography at the moment and I've tended to use the net as a source for additional, relevant information.

I've never considered myself a net addict: give me the company of friends or outside activity any day - and when the longer hours of daylight are here, I'd much rather be making the most of them. Nonetheless it's telling just how much it's become part of the fabric of my everyday routine. Not to mention the basis of a lot of keeping in touch with friends, of the "real" and "online" variety (the inverted commas being for the fact that there's far less of a distinction these days) or if I'm not online, then using the PC to listen to music.

So I'm finding I'm having to make do - I'm not exactly after sympathy by pointing out that I'm blogging from the pub, for example - but I've realized that, until I get the damn thing sorted, then it's necessitated quite a change of routine. Not to mention forced me to pay attention to some things that I've been putting off for some time (eg getting things sorted around the flat, like rearranging and getting some new furniture). There's something quite refreshing liberating about that, and - as suggested above - liberating.

I would like to think that, once/if the PC is up and running again, then I'll not allow myself to incorporate it back into my routine as much as before. It would be nice to have it functional again, but really I should also make the most of it not being there.


Zhoen said...

It's just that they are so damned useful. And we count online all the stuff we once did as separate tasks. Read paper, do crosswords, write letter, call friends, pay bills, watch TV... and I do all those things online now.

Still, get a chance to go out with friends or read a book, and all that gets shut off.

trousers said...

Absolutely Zhoen - on all counts: I do all those things online (except the bills).

Useful, extremely so: but there's surely a certain counterproductivity in finding oneself so reliant. If you follow my drift, it's like the quote from Fight Club which stuck with me: do you own your possessions, or do they own you?

At least, that's much of what it's left me with. I agree that it does get shut off when doing other stuff - but it's a slightly different feeling when the option of it being shut off or not is less within one's hands than it normally is.

trousers said...

Oops I italicized rather than bolded you. Hope you don't mind :)

Fire Byrd said...

Ah yes but you'd be missed from here if you don't have a bit of addiction!

Zhoen said...

Agreed, just quibbling over the time total.