You might have noticed the decline in original content on this site. I would like to say that it is because I’m very busy with more important things, but that’s only partially true. The truth is, my creativity seems to be waning. If I had to choose some culprits in this productivity heist, I would suggest video games and technology fatigue – as well as the education system.
Yes, video games have many admirable qualities, not the least of which is the ability to frustrate for hours on end. They also have a quite unique talent at making one feel as though he has accomplished something, when clearly he actually has not. The feeling that accompanies an in-game promotion or the unlocking of a difficult “achievement” is hard to emulate in every-day activities. But upon looking back, there’s really nothing to be gained. The next great game will come out and your previous successes will have instantly vanished. You could try something like World of Warcraft, the persistence of which is downright frightening, but there are surely more cons than pros to be had.
And then there is the Internet, and the expansion of readily-available template websites and “blogs,” and media-sharing outlets. I stopped any real learning of code when I found out how easy it was to just use WordPress, and I stopped working on my most time-intensive website when I finally realized that I couldn’t keep up with the pace of what everyone else was doing. The material was popping up elsewhere and mine was largely unnecessary. Now I’ve found that just about anything I would ever need to read, or watch, or study, or even write is already propagated throughout the world (except, of course, for one thing).
Physical technology itself is tired too. Now every 12 year old has an iPhone with the ability to play media and browse the Internet wirelessly from anywhere (even with all its drawbacks), netbooks are bringing tiny, ultraportable computing to the masses, and $500 computers have 4 GB of DDR2 RAM and quad-core processors. Hence, there’s nothing really to be excited about; everything is ubiquitous.
Finally, after high school it is exceedingly unrealistic to study the classics or philosophy or art, or any form of expression that would actually foster originality. An appreciation of these must be cultivated in spare time, as a distraction from drudgery and monotony. And since it’s much more fun to watch TV or play games (see above), this usually doesn’t get done.
So because of games, and other people’s websites being awesome, and gadgets lacking appeal, and my slowly dissolving knowledge of Emerson and Keats, I feel like any expression of creativity must be forced and deliberate. This won’t stop me from writing absurd time-wasting posts (like this one), but it’s just something to consider. And it’s an explanation for why ManBoyChildGuy IV will likely never occur…
…Or will it??