Tuesday, April 5, 2011

New age procrastination

How did people procrastinate before the internet? When I have an assignment due I can find a number of technological ways to occupy my wandering mind.
I probably hold the record for most times I've reread my facebook and twitter newsfeeds. I get on yahoo and scroll through the current news. I blog hop. I start designing my wedding. I start designing my friends' weddings. I design my future house. I take webcam photos. I write a blog. I change my background. I log on facebook chat to see who is on and quickly log off hoping nobody saw my name pop up. I create a study playlist on youtube. I get sidetracked by funny videos. I consider making a funny video. I realize I'm not funny enough. I text. I download new ringtones. I go to the app store. I download and play like six new games. I pull up a blank word document to write my paper but start writing what I'm sure will be the next great American novel. I quickly quit realizing that I'd have to write like 200 more pages. I open my syllabus for class. I read it a couple times. I open another word document and put my name as the header. I insert page numbers. I type "working title". Then I start the process all over again.

But then I realized... really, what did our parents do? Did they have to be productive (heaven forbid)? I should Google it. I imagine that procrastination looked a little something like the following: reading Huckleberry Finn, listening to records, watching a variety show, skipping rocks, quilting, writing in a diary, talking to whoever you're "going steady with" on the twisty cord phone, fishing at the fishin' hole, etc. Though these seem obvious, we can't be sure they are the truth. Are there any parents out there (said in lifeboat conductor's voice from Titanic)? Can anybody verify these likely very accurate representations of "the good ol' days"? Assuming these are hard facts, life must have been terrible.

So parents, thanks for inventing the internet.


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