Sunday, April 12, 2009

Technologization of Life or Just Making of Unexpected Connections...or Both

Occasionally I find some unexpected connections between unrelated events. During Easter celebration this morning, the worship leader announced the name of the next song we would be singing. No problem. But it was the name of the song we had just finished singing. It startled me because I wasn't sure what had just happened. Yes; he said the name of that song a few minutes before. And, yes, he just said it again, didn't he? As the leader corrected himself, my father-in-law stated the obvious to my mother-in-law: "He just said the name of the same song." With a split-second to think, I turned around and said, "The CD player was set on track repeat."

Another moment later I had a chance to process what I just said. I hadn't simply described an event in technological terms. I had made an understandable connection between two unrelated events.

This event accentuated another event that I experienced at my brother-in-law's house yesterday. I was shooting some pool with my sister-in-law's husband when he made a dramatic, though unplanned, shot that I happened to catch only out of the corner of my eye. I said then, "I need to see that on instant replay."

If I were assessing the quality of my life based on the ability to experience one-time events again, I suppose one would have to say that I'd become pathetic. Unrequited YouTuber. But I wasn't. I saw enough of the shot to appreciate it for what it was. I didn't really have to capture it. (Now, maybe if it had been a cooler shot...)

What was interesting was that two events exemplified how technological life had become. And not simply for me. Both of the comments I made over two different days made perfect sense to the people who heard it. We've all become more technological.

There is another part to this that isn't about technology. You'll find that I can make some unexpected connections in other ways. This is what makes me the person I am.

I was in London in the middle of March. Arcadia University is known for its study abroad opportunities. I was with 25 other faculty and staff members leading 300 students on an annual Spring Break chance for first-year students to decide if they might want to study abroad for an entire term. I was with some students tromping up the steps of St. Paul's cathedral. One particular gal was ready to bail out of the vertical trek to meet up with us again on the way down. I goaded, taunted, and cajoled her successfully. And as she continued the marathon with much whining and complaining, I motivated her with the words: "Come on. It's no worse than an eight-page paper."

I see myself as a big-picture thinker. Perhaps the endpoint of this post is not the technologization of life, but really the making of unexpected connections. Keep an eye out in subsequent posts and see if you agree.

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