Posted in The Neo-Luddite and Technology

The LORs Prayer

Our Godgle who art online, hollowed be thy name,

Thy thingdom has come, thy will being done on earth as it is in cyberspace.

So weave us this day our daily web,

And forgive us our sims as we forgive those who simulate against us,

And lead us not into discontinuation but deliver us from the believable,

For thine is the programme to devour the story, forever and ever, Amen.

Posted in Songs and Spoken Word

Monday Monday Song 70 – The 13th Floor

(Editor’s Note: The following lyrics were written October 9, 1999 after I watched the movie “The 13th Floor.”).

Let’s you and me drive to where the world ends.
I don’t know if I love you but I would love to pretend.
Let’s you and me drive to where the world ends.
This may be make believe but I sure love the space I’m in.

I was on the streets of the town last evening. I was looking for a familiar face, something I could sink my teeth in.
A man put a gun to my head and asked why I was laughing.
I said “Go ahead and shoot me, my friend, because this is all a simulation.”

Let’s you and me drive to where the world ends.
I don’t know if I love you but I would love to pretend.
Let’s you and me drive to where the world ends.
This may be make believe but I sure love the space I’m in.

I was up on the 13th floor with you last evening and I got to wondering if you were real or just a fantasy in my head.
Then you touched me, you held me, and my dreams all came true.
Now I don’t care if this is real anymore because I feel alive when I’m with you.

Let’s you and me drive to where the world ends.
I don’t know if I love you but I would love to pretend.
Let’s you and me drive to where the world ends.
This may be make believe but I sure love the space I’m in.

Posted in Leaves on the Poet Tree (Poems)

Velveteen

my dreams follow me into waking
like fireflies fading in the morning light

a hand I held while asleep is withdrawn
yet the warmth of friendship still remains and follows me throughout the early moments of this day

caught between reality and dreams
it is difficult to determine what is more relevant or real
what is still velveteen or what has been made flesh

outside my window the mourning dove calls me into another day of walking between my two everpresent lives

Posted in Leaves on the Poet Tree (Poems)

Becoming Real

image

sometimes I have the sinking
suspicion that I am
missing out
that there is something I am
supposed to be doing
that I am subconsciously
avoiding
I am active
life is good
I am blessed
yet there is this prickling on the
back of my neck

I do not want to move through
life as a ghost and then
suddenly wake up
to find that I have
faded away into
nothing

I am haunted by the fear of
never doing anything truly
significant
the lives I have touched
the words I have spoken
the love I have given
the tears I have wiped
away from your eyes
all are swallowed by the
subtle storm of
discontent

I may never be
content
that is the nature of a
creative soul
so I continue
to live
to love
to write
in the hope that the pattern
will become clear
my fading ends and like
the velveteen rabbit
I become more
real

Posted in Leaves on the Poet Tree (Poems)

Reality of Dreams

image

Sometimes I think a memory was something I dreamed.
When I look deeper I remember it was real.

Then again reality is not always what it seems
and there is meaning behind what my dreams conceal.

Posted in WWJP? What Would Jesus Play?

The NEW Virtual Babysitter

Come mothers and fathers throughout the land. Why do you not criticize or attempt to understand why your sons (especially, your sons) and your daughters are beyond your command? Forget TV, a new babysitter has come to toyland. The GameBoy. It seems lately that I have seen boy after boy with the little box in hand mesmerized by the images on the screen. Even in church where it seems that parents have decided that this is one way to keep the kids occupied. And quiet. By all means, quiet. Add to this the GB’s virtual cousin, the computer and its myriad spawn, the Internet, IM, email, games, etc., and there is a plethora of screens for children to lose themselves in. And TV remains.

Based on Nielsen ratings, the following information was found here. Number of minutes per week that parents spend in meaningful conversation with their children:3.5. Number of minutes per week that the average child watches television: 1,680. Percentage of day care centers that use TV during a typical day: 70. Percentage of parents who would like to limit their children’s TV watching: 73. Percentage of 4-6 year-olds who, when asked to choose between watching TV and spending time with their fathers, preferred television: 54. Hours per year the average American youth spends in school: 900 hours. Hours per year the average American youth watches television: 1500.

(And from http://kidshealth.org/parent/positive/family/tv_affects_child.html)
Most children plug into the world of television long before they enter school: 70% of child-care centers use TV during a typical day. In a year, the average child spends 900 hours in school and nearly 1,023 hours in front of a TV. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), kids in the United States watch about 4 hours of TV a day – even though the AAP guidelines say children older than 2 should watch no more than 1 to 2 hours a day of quality programming. And, according to the guidelines, children under age 2 should have no “screen time” (TV, DVDs or videotapes, computers, or video games) at all. (This includes Baby Einstein). During the first 2 years, a critical time for brain development, TV can get in the way of exploring, learning, and spending time interacting and playing with parents and others, which helps young children develop the skills they need to grow cognitively, physically, socially, and emotionally.

Do not get me wrong or box me in as a Luddite. I still believe (I think) that Technology is good, but it must be held very gently. Very, very gently, like an asp. Pixels are no substitute for human interaction, the virtual for the real of face, feelings, and flesh. And we wonder why our youth are becoming increasingly anti-social?

And I have not yet touched upon the overwhelming violence that permeates whatever screens our children are being lost in. That subject is forthcoming.

For now, let us not be deceived by the siren song that calls from the screen. If our children are raised by the virtual, than virtual they will be. I choose to imagine another world, the one that is real, with love and pain, not found on Reality TV. It is the world of you and me, with ALL of its complexity. Selah.
Originally posted November 15, 2005