The Illusion Of Busy ~ 3rd May 2013
I’m not actually typing anything. Not really. Well, I’m typing this. But it could be nonsense. It might be nonsense.
I’m standing in this coffee shop waiting somewhat patiently on the quite serious barista to pour a regular cup of coffee. Something that seems to be taking too long in my opinion. But it does look like it is being done with an extreme amount of care. The regular coffee. I’m sure it’s worth the wait.
The wait. Left standing about, surrounded by others standing about. Uncomfortable.
So I’m typing rather furiously away on my phone. Typing nothing. The way I imagine everyone around me is also doing. It’s what they look like they’re doing.
Killing time. Looking busy. Looking engaged. Dare I say, important?
Because honestly, there’s not much to scan after a while. On this iPhone, I mean.
I’ve checked the news. Well, the headlines. Same as this morning.
My emails are dull – mostly junk or things I’d rather not deal with right now.
FB? No – nothing there.
No one to text mundane updates to.
I despise Twitter. And I don’t think I’m witty enough anyway. Not to use it cleverly, like I might like to.
I have a bazillion apps on this thing, but I have forgotten what they are and where they are. I have them organized in little folders. In other words, I have no idea what apps I actually have – outside of the three or four I regularly use.
(I remember reading an article a while back about this. I forget where. But the gist was that I am not alone here. That most everyone only uses the same three to five apps on a regular basis, despite the multitudes of others that are uploaded to their devices. It’s an aside, but I found it reassuring.)
But back to the wait.
How much can one really accomplish in three minutes? Not much. Nothing really. Or so I’ve found.
So I’ve nothing left to do. To look at, to engage in. Not in the few moments while I wait for my drink. Yet, I don’t want to just be caught standing about with seemingly nothing going on. How dreadful!
And I don’t want to make eye-contact with the people around me.
I would rather not engage with them.
They’re right here, and they are all probably weirdos.
I might get stuck in some banal conversation.
So instead I look down at my tiny screen, pretending to be very engaged. I look busy.
Thank god for smart phones.
Now I can pretend along with everyone else that I have so many things to occupy my time that even the three minute wait for a drink must be spent doing something quite urgent, quite important.
At least, I look important and that’s all that matters.
Because really, I could actually be writing this:
mxkjid ksissg skdidssij \skhfiid9 slertui dfoo
sfosdithwie didicg w?eo !!
And no one would know!
Isn’t technology wonderful?