The Time Vacuum

Banksy has done it again. If you don’t know Banksy, you can learn more about this anonymous street artist here:

As a matter of fact, go ahead and click on that link to see what has been dubbed by the media as “Mobile Lovers.” I’ll wait….

So, what did you think of it? Did you think of it? I certainly did; today we, myself included, spend so much time with our noses in our smartphones or tablets I’m surprised that the world continues to function. I came across an article featuring the latest from Banksy on Facebook, took a look at it and immediately put my phone down. My first thought was about just how much time I WASTE on my phone and tablet.

Before I had a smart phone, before I got married even, I had copious amounts of time. Admittedly, A wasn’t even in grade school yet and I do get a week off every other week from active parenting, but I didn’t just lose all those hours over night.  I worked as many overtime hours as I could since I was making $22k a year and had to support myself and A. Yet I was time rich.

What did I do with all that time? I cleaned. I had a very clean apartment. I cleaned my bathroom regularly, I never left dishes in the sink, my floors were never really dirty. I’m by no means a clean freak, I’m not about to sweep up after people as they walk around my house, I simply had time and I prioritized it.

I watched a lot of movies since I didn’t have cable, but not every night. I might have consumed one or two movies per week (with the exception of my Hannibal Lector binge where I watched Silence of the Lambs, Hannibal, and Red Dragon on consecutive nights – scared myself senseless), usually while I was doing laundry. I spent my days tethered to my desk, I had the worst time sitting still when I got home, so if I was going to entertain myself with a movie I had to be doing something at the same time.

If I was really bored I did push-ups and jumped rope (thanks to a first floor apartment). Or I went for a walk on the bike trail, pulling A in the wagon.

I won’t say that I didn’t have a bit of an instant messaging addiction, it was how I stayed in touch with K, who at the time lived in Phoenix, but I didn’t bother with that until after A was in bed. Slowly but surely, social media started to eat into my time.  It was a slow bleed, a few minutes here and there until suddenly I’m complaining that there aren’t enough hours in a day.

So I’m going to do a bit of an experiment for the rest of this week: I’m going to attempt (again) to ignore the lure of the ultimate in time wasters – that’s you Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Tumblr, especially Pinterest – and see just how much time I get back. I’m not even going to play solitaire on my iPad in bed before I go to sleep. I’m reading 5 different books right now and making progress in none of them – I’ll read instead.

And I’ll pick up blogging again. Yes, I’d given up writing in favor of mindlessly staring at Facebook and Pinterest, zoned out like a zombie. I’m just about half way to my goal number of poems for publication, so I’ll continue to work on that as well.

I’ve picked up a new habit called kettlebells, their call every evening will be so much easier to answer. Who knows, if I can find my blasted mouth piece, maybe I’ll pick up the trumpet again (I refuse to let that dream/goal die).

Care to join me in this little experiment?  How about for 1 day? How many things do you think you can get done, that either need doing or that you WANT to do but “haven’t had time for?”


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