Tag Archives: addiction

Me and my laptop

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So yesterday, I bought a bike. The last one got stolen somewhere last fall, but with the snowy season kicking in early last year, I never really bothered to get a new one. Well, that and I was kinda getting tight on the budget. But we’ve had great weather the last couple of weeks here, and even apart from that I was getting real tired of walking everywhere. It’s fecking time-consuming, I’m telling ya.

Anyways. Yesterday was not a good time to buy a bike. At least, not yesterday between 5 and 6 pm.

See, I was happily rejoicing in my newly acquired possession (a black bike! with 21 gear! and decent breaks instead of back-pedal! and a slightly unstable pedal, but anyway, it was only 700 SEK), and walking back to the lab (don’t have a decent lock yet… I’m not taking any chances this time), when this suddenly crossed my path.

I thought it was quite exciting. A crime scene on University grounds. I felt like Morse. Or Frost. Or De Cock. With C-O-C-K*.

So I took a detour to get to the entrance to my building, but it only got better. Firetrucks. And firefighters. And policemen. Cute ones, at that. EVERYWHERE.

Turns out the ventilation broke down in one of the wings, and the whole department had been evacuated, nobody was allowed in. Which is good. Because you don’t want people running around in a building full of chemicals but without ventilation. Only, and I am trying to say this in the calmest way possible…

MY LAPTOP WAS IN THERE!

I have very consciously decided not to get a tv here, because I felt I was watching too much of it, only to have my full focus turned to my laptop. It is my alarm in the morning, my radio, my writing sanctuary, my phone, and my connection to the outside world (i.e. it gives me internet). In other words: it’s my everything. Without my internet laptop, I am nothing. I need it like I need oxygen.

And I was not allowed to go get it.

Clearly, they didn’t know me yet. I’m not much of a troublemaker, but I’m stubborn as hell. I got security at Rock Werchter to break the rules just for me without uttering a single word, and I’d do it again.

And thus I went back there every hour. Until they let me in.

They finally caved.

Love to say, I told ya so.

I couldn’t stop my experiment though so that failed miserably, but who cares about a week’s work? I had my laptop back.

And everything was right in the world.

*It’s from a Dutch crime series, in which the main detective always spells his name when introducing himself. “My name is De Cock. With C-O-C-K.” It doesn’t mean the same in Dutch, by the way. The first two are British, should you not be familiar. I should find analogies that are more internationally usable.

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Hi, I’m Lies, and I’m addicted to blogs

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There’s no more denying it.

When I first started this blog (well, strictly speaking not this one, but the try-out one before), I was subscribed to 3 blogs. Three. As in 1, 2, 3. I loved them. They updated a couple of times a week, and I liked my bit of fresh reading every morning before starting work.

But I had more time to spare than just reading 3 blogs in the morning. Sometimes neither of them had updated, and I had nothing to read. Enter: the quest for new blogs.

I compulsively started to read Freshly Pressed, often adding 2-3 new blogs to my reading list on a ‘good’ day. I followed up on commenters I encountered on other blogs, I googled, I followed links leading everywhere. And thus I found myself every morning, hurrying to read all updates and not succeeding – there was just too much to read and too little time. Half of it wasn’t even that interesting. But it had been written, and thus, it had to be read.

So, out of curiosity, I counted the number of blogs currently in my feed. 93. Ninety three. That’s a 30-fold increase (3000%) in a mere 3 months. And there I am wondering why I seem to have so little free time here… I’m spending it all reading about other peoples lives!
And thus, yesterday and tonight, I have followed up on all the blogs – have they updated recently, did I like at least half of their recent posts, … . I have removed blogs before, most often Freshly Pressed ones that I didn’t like as much as I thought I would, but this time I have withdrawn from a greater number than ever before, including some which I have come to ‘know’ well, but that simply do not seem to appeal to me as much as they used to.

I didn’t like it. In fact, I hated it. I know it is not easy to keep on producing good, relevant posts, with the right balance of humor, information, personal involvement, … day after day after day. I am struggling so much myself. I know that behind each blog, each post is a person, who put their soul in that piece of writing, who wants (and deserves) to be read. And I don’t like taking that away from them. I don’t like it at all.

But it has been done – my Google Reader accepts feeds from ‘only’ 50 blogs anymore. It is still too much, but it is as much as I can handle to throw out right now. In addition, I have banned myself from reading Freshly Pressed – I know I will not be able to NOT subscribe if I really like a post.

So I apologize to all those who I will never read again… but it was nice knowing you while it lasted.

(and, with only 2 more minutes of laptop time – I forgot the charger at work – I publish this without re-reading… apologies for the spelling errors!)