October 24, 2010

A major turn-off (and I don't mean garlic breath)

Sensory overload.

Not since the silenced roar of Tokyo have I felt so over-stimulated. This morning I had to turn off the Law and Order mega-thon, power down my CD player and take a mind break.

While I love the escape of mindless entertainment, this dependency on technology always catches up with me. I hold my breath and overeat while parked in front of a massive flat screen. If NCIS isn't on, I settle for Jersey Shore reruns. I drink diet cola until my stomach burns and I wonder where all these headaches are coming from. I'm easily irritated by actual human interaction, but my self-esteem correlates directly to the number of people who have written on my Facebook.

This lasts as long as my body (or mother) allows. Sometimes days or even weeks.

But eventually, I can't handle anymore. The noise of TV, the unrealistic plot lines (and body lines), and the strange obsession with social media---it suddenly seems unbearable, and I find myself on a walk around the neighborhood, thankful I left my iPod at home. Passing multi-million dollar houses, I acknowledge my judgments on how many square feet are really necessary. I wave to neighbors I don't know, and I smile at the yip-yip-yippy dogs chasing me down fence lines.

Open fields in sight and wind in my ears, I can breathe easier. I stop second-guessing myself (well, almost!).

After the walk, I feel better in my room with the door closed and the lamp on. Outside my window, the rhythmic hum of Old Cheney sounds less like traffic and more like waves.

Now if I could just turn off this laptop...