Head trips

Stumbling away from my cubicle at lunch time, blurred with boredom and fatigue, I find myself in an elevator going down 31 floors.  On the way, my fellow passengers are all deeply involved with their phones – texting, scrolling, listening…  I look at people doing this a lot in NYC, on the sidewalk, the train, in the lobby, and I think, “What are they doing?  Calling their kids?  Checking Twitters?  Texting a girlfriend?  Looking at the stock quotes?  Reading a Shakespeare sonnet..?”

Personally, I am happy with my primitive cell phone that I rarely use.  I have no desire to be connected, not when I am away from my work/desk, anyway.  This is not a criticism – I just don’t fathom the attraction this activity has for all these people so much of the time.

I made my way down Broadway to my favored cold-weather lunch time nap location, Trinity Church.  Inside, a service is going on, and I find my way to a padded bench in the back corner and settle in.  My attention is caught by the wonderful voice of the minister giving his homily on theodicy, the existence of evil and strife in God’s world.  Why is there tragedy like the earthquake in Haiti?  Does God cause it, let it happen?  Very few people are at the service, but the minister speaks very well – I can accept everything he says by simply jettisoning the God-stuff.

Religion does offer something!  A quiet place, a haven from the idiotic swirling frenzy of talk, arrangements, markets, advertisements, gossip, bad news, celebrity…the stuff of workaday life.  Drills down to the essential, witnessing love, a larger mission to give meaning to life, compassion, the inevitable arc of living from birth to death, all that universal stuff.

He finishes, some organ music, and I dimly sense people going forward…to take communion?, shake his hand – no, the hand shaking happened a few minutes ago… I drift in and out of sleep for fifteen minutes and awake, somewhat refreshed.

Advertisements

7 Responses to Head trips

  1. Man of Roma says:

    all deeply involved with their phones …I look at people doing this a lot in NYC, on the sidewalk, the train, in the lobby … personally I am happy with my primitive cell phone.

    I understand very well. Being connected all the time causes estrangement from affections, dont parfois je suis une victime. Et cette foule, de plus en plus abandonnée, exactement comme il m’arrive parfois, mais épisodiquement, la foule ne le sachant, or maybe le sachant, how stupid of me …

    But, if one loves computers like I do, I’m now in my autism considering you might miss something, since I’m quite happy with my Blackberry-like Nokia E63, where I can do almost all I can do on my laptop, and read, n’importe où je me promène dans la ville – maybe while waiting before the arch of Constantine a Roman bus that never arrives in time – of Jewish stranger that in NYC is writing of always dreamed tho never seen Trinity Church where he takes a nap at lunch time and reflects on religion and on the meaning of life.

    Une drogue, c’est incontestable , mais quand même mieux que la mescaline!

    Hope you don’t mind if for I while I mix in my comments English and French, since I feel like it, for no perverted reason, I promise 🙂

  2. Ducky's here says:

    Religion does offer something! A quiet place, a haven from the idiotic swirling frenzy of talk, arrangements, markets, advertisements, gossip, bad news, celebrity…the stuff of workaday life. Drills down to the essential, witnessing love, a larger mission to give meaning to life, compassion, the inevitable arc of living from birth to death, all that universal stuff.

    —————————

    You seem to be from the T.S. Eliot school

    • lichanos says:

      Religion does offer something! … but nor for me.

      You seem to be from the T.S. Eliot school.
      I know virtually nothing of TSE, and I’m speaking of what it offers for others. Wasn’t he a fervent Catholic? Anyway, it’s a universal need, don’t you think?

  3. Ducky's here says:

    … “Blessed mother, please teach me to be still.”

    I think it’s in Ash Wednesday.

  4. Ducky's here says:

    Universal need? Indeed.

  5. troutsky says:

    I remember ducking into that church one day when NY city was just too much for this country bumpkin. An hour or so and I was ready for more!

    I pretend all the cell phone people are talking to each other in the elevator, who knows? I have not yet succumbed but plenty tempted at times.

  6. lichanos says:

    I like cellphones…but control your technology.

    My dance instructor said, “YOU control the music – don’t let it control you!” (His point was that we shouldn’t bop around like marionettes…) Interesting and not all that intuitive. With techno-toys, I think it’s pretty cut and dried…

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: