The Long Form

I’ve only read three books so far this year.

20150718_183402“Busy”,  yes. But I’ve promised myself not to use that word anymore. I am not busier than I choose to be, and how I choose to be busy with my time (consciously or not) is my responsibility.

I’ve read that our attention spans have shortened to 8 seconds. I remember reading that. The headline promised 5 ways to deal with that fact. So I’m sure I skimmed down to the numbers. The bullet points.

But I don’t remember any of them.

I find myself simultaneously offended by, and drawn to articles with numbered lists. While it is true that I have always had a thing for exact numbers (my poems can testify to that), this is different. This is the speed-reading of our culture. Power Points. Facebook articles, shared and discussed on the basis of a headline. (At least, that appears to be the case on my feed. People sometimes admitting they don’t have time to read the article, but they’d like to add that…).

5 Things I’ve Been Doing All Wrong

1. Using Facebook to provide superficial feelings of belonging/approval
2. Surfing through the social feeds as a procrastination tool (to avoid working on projects that might carry with them the possibility of failure)
3. Not reading a single point of view for more than two minutes
4. Not thinking about a single subject for a more than five. Not ruminating – meditating – arguing (with myself)
5. Not trusting myself to move slowly and deliberately among the big ideas

It’s time to devote more time to Arts & Letters Daily. To full articles. Books. The Long Form.


I googled the article. I was wrong. There are 3 ways to deal with it:

(in reverse order)

3. Avoid electronic devices
My typewriter, despite valiant efforts by my son, is still busted. I am a lefty. Ink smears. Want more excuses?

2. Exercise
Seriously? The explanation: “Men who were part of a Spanish cycling team responded seven percent much faster than the less fit group in a computerized task.”
Anyone else seeing some serious logical gaps here?

1. Drink More Fluids
Wait. This one works for me. There are three bottles of wine in the kitchen.

I’m going to grab a glass of merlot and a book, and go read in bed. Next up: The Adventures of Henry Thoreau by Michael Sims. I’ve been looking forward to this. 
I have more than five minutes before bedtime.




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