Thursday, December 8, 2011

Blogging in the Blood

Sorry, I've been too long away. At first I thought I'd give it a couple of months to finish up a writing project that took me through the summer. But now that's done, and I need to get back to my blog. I've updated the look and am ready to ramble. I've missed out on a busy few months: Wall Street was occupied, the Republican candidates have been competing to see who can be the biggest ignoramus out there, the US soccer team has a new German coach, Obama has taken to the heartland to defend the middle class and the legacy of Teddy Roosevelt, and celebrities everywhere continue to make a mockery of themselves.

At home, I turned 51 and finished a second draft of a novel. It's called Latitudes - A Story of Coming Home, and I'll probably excerpt some of it here in the next few months.

The kids are growing up fast. School actually seems to have a salutary affect on them. They complain but then talk about their classes and projects and want to show off what they've learned. It's not perfect,  but their public school education seems to be doing its job. At my school, the kids get nicer every year. As a language teacher i get to channel their social energy and instinct for fun. It's all about communication in the classroom.

A good book I read recently was Moonwalking with Einstein by Jonathan Foer. It's about a lot of things, but mainly memory, the way it functions neurologically, collectively and individually. The part i found most memorable was the description of how books were originally written and read as an aid to oral memorization and only slowly, with the advent of the printing press and the need to read widely and quickly, did books become seen as a repository of our collective knowledge,  an offloading of our memory banks into texts. The process is accelerating today with the proliferation of blogs and digital photography and with the storage capacity of the Internet and rapidly moving advances integrating our nervous systems with computer controls, the day is moving quickly closer when we will theoretically be able to remember everything and have access instantly to the collective information of the entire world. Our notions of what it means to be human will have to change. But something tells me this brave new world will not materialize in quite such a promising way.
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