The Weekly Gripe

Gripes the News
The Soapbox
Gripes in the pipes
*

Too much time wasted on E-mail?

25 comments  Add a comment

E-MAIL – yea or nay?  Yea and nay, both - particularly to him who is at once and at it a novice.  He is one when caught in the labyrinthine web of the CyberSpider will in no time find himself unable to resist its lure; and surfeiting his appetite will no sooner than has started begin to wane and die from disappointment, resentment to fatigue.  The email is a curse, a hobgoblin of a monkey on the back of the e-mailer to linger – unless, and unless shaken off.

When my other half was introduced to and initiated into the exciting world of e-mailing, a time saving technological marvel for connecting with the world beyond the immediate with immediacy, I noted a glowing change in her pattern of behaviour, a significant departure from the usual: time is frittered away so that lunch is missed; supper is late or overlooked; grocery shopping postponed, the penchant to work or tickle the cursed keypad incessantly becomes an obsessive-compulsive behaviour, a psycho-pathological schema, just about.

I hazard to guess how many a victim of this elusive syndrome characterised by OCPD, a personality disorder, fall prey in subordination and deference to the deleterious effects of this debilitating incapacitation leading to restless nights; and worse, not realising it.

Too much time wasted on email? Reading Katie Goodman's column on this topic some years ago made me rethink that to be “normal” would be to dowse within for the ability to resolve to quit e-mailing cold turkey as part of a detoxification program, or find ways to curb and kick the destructive habits.  There is a time and place for e-mailing – a great but a deuce of a tool to manage for the unsuspecting.

Humorist Katie Goodman, you may discover, authored Improvisation for the Spirit: Live a Creative, Spontaneous and Courageous Life Using the Tools of Improv Comedy.  It is written for her that the single thread that weaves all of these elements together is Creativity. 

Her credulous bio draws comments from literary heavyweights as Alan Cohen, author of The Dragon Doesn't Live Here Anymore and Why Your Life Sucks, calling her book a great unique niche, humorous and inspiring.

Gail Lerner, Emmy-nominated comedy writer (Will & Grace) ”Many books promise to unleash your creativity.  Katie Goodman's not only unleashes it, but also teaches it to walk on its hind legs, catch a Frisbee, and maybe even fall in love with a cat.

From Ariana Huffington of the Huffington Post: "If Robin Williams and Dear Abby had a baby and hired Tony Robbins to raise it, you might get someone as bright, funny, insightful, and inspiring as Katie Goodman.  But why bother, she's already here -- dispensing laugh-inducing and life-changing lessons.  Punchlines have never been so practical.  Life is one big ad-lib and Improvisation For The Spirit shows you how to bring the house down."

All the greats relating to the afore-plagiarised paeans to the glorification and acceptance of Katie Goodman as believable are well and good; but for the moment, it is not about the effusively ebullient all-round personage than about her reminding us when and how to lock on to the simple yet bad habits, and dispensing the tools to challenge them that is poignantly notable. 

Sending an email with outlook She herself figured she had come to despise the e-mail as being intrusive and overwhelmingly stress-inducing, unhinging of one's attention span and focus.  Worst of all, it is “devoid of verbal tone and facial expression, and leads to miscommunication, confusion and hurt feelings.” The culture of speed for the sake of convenience and instantaneous results can be anything but a relief. 

Coming from her and having experienced the tugs of her angst and frustration, I would imagine it was time for me, at least, to consider incorporating her thoughts into the state of my own behaviour relative to e-mailing.  I know what my resolution for the new years is: be like her, go cold turkey and reassess what, where, with whom - and when and how - I should spend time on.

For starters, trim down the contact list to a manageable size; write off those who chose not to communicate.  One mail in return for another's would be a good start.  The persiflage of Facebook, Twitter too can go the way of the dodo.  That is as far my creativity will take me, for now. 

By: Sam, the Tiger


Leave a comment

First Prev Page 1 of 2 Next Last

Donna

Donna

Hi, Sending e-mails is a favorite thing of mine since I am on the computer everyday almost not for a job, but in my own personal time. I don't waste that much time on e-mails because I don't send a lot of them out to people, but when I do I like to do it. Sometimes I also like to unplug the computer and not use it at all, and find myself plugging it in again and using it. I guess computers has become a very important thing for us to use now and very interesting in some things it is good for.
Donna
27th Nov 12 02:34

!

-17
grumpyoldwoman

grumpyoldwoman

Har har har,G. Lad! I said both bridegrooms had the same christian name! (They were not so imaginative with christian names in those days, over 150 years ago.) The two families lived in the same road.

Completely off topic I know, but when researching the family tree relatives add up quickly. When you think about it, you had 4 grandparents, 8 great grandparents, and so on; it doubles up with every generation. Then you add in everyone's brothers and sisters (not your direct ancestors, but their names lead to other researchers who may have useful info) and the numbers really add up. When you get back around 300 years with some lines it's not unusual to have 800 - 1000 names.

No, I haven't found any relatives in Norfolk!
grumpyoldwoman
22nd Jan 11 07:11

!

-17
Sam, the Tiger

Sam, the Tiger

"don't" and "tell-tale signs" - shucks ... far too brief for WG to let it upload. More padding needed for some reason - here we go.
Sam, the Tiger
21st Jan 11 22:11

!

-12
Sam, the Tiger

Sam, the Tiger

GOW - a great reminder about insulting the intelligence of our readers. Little things you do or dont's do are tell-tales signs about your character. Last week, I posted a letter and allowed the clerk to affix the postage stamp. Hurriedly, she stuck it on very badly and thoughtlessly.

I removed the stamp quickly and reset it to look straighter and balanced, at the same time telling the clerk that the recipient of the mail would think I didn't care; I'd have been thought disrespectful.

Amazing how much info you've accumulated via your researches. My wife has had to do a lot of cross-referencing from different data sources. Much did not add up and back to the drawing board, again and again. And whoa, and what skeletons can pop up in the closet for her too?

Keep tracking, GOW.
Sam, the Tiger
21st Jan 11 22:07

!

-2
grumpyoldwoman

grumpyoldwoman

Sam, MikeP and I have pointed out many times that to post poorly written comments is an insult to potential readers; unfortunately this often falls on deaf ears!

I too use Ancestry, I have over 800 people in our tree, but it's getting harder to find out anything new. I think the law of diminishing returns applies. It does make you realise how hard life often was for our ancestors and some fascinating stories emerge. The grumpyoldman's side a few generations back has two sisters marrying two brothers in a double wedding. To make it more confusing both bridegrooms had the same christian name!
grumpyoldwoman
21st Jan 11 17:37

!

-11
Sam, the Tiger

Sam, the Tiger

Hi Mornin' - and very glad you had a chance to read it and take it in stride. At least 18 leaders had a hand in this and the writing itself has to be Karen's Armstrong's with her signature all over with none of the preciosity that characterizes some documents, like legal ones. That is hard to swallow.

I enjoy the submitted commentaries that are nicely written. Don't you think that to have anything less than proper and carefully witten document amounts to an insult to the journalistic integrity of the WG, cheapens it, showing it disrespect - not to mention that it also insults the intelligence of its readers. They deserve better.

Genealogy and lineage tracking, huh? What a hobby? My wife has been tracking hers via Ancestry.com using The Family Tree Maker I believe (2011 version available to update). Amazing how much she accomplished in two years. That's how we found her 2nd cousin in central California, and another kin in Northern CA (November-December, 2010) whose folks came via covered wagons.

Reminds us of Grapes of Wrath and the Joads running away from the Dust Bowl. Just love Steinbeck country around Salinas (O' Mice and Men) and the Monterey peninsula that was the setting for most of his novels - Cannery Row, Totilla Flat, so on. Speaking of compassion - and the plight of migrant workers ...
Sam, the Tiger
20th Jan 11 12:08

!

-10
grumpyoldwoman

grumpyoldwoman

Hi Sam, I read the Charter for compassion. It is extremely good advice, if a little difficult to follow sometimes! We should all try harder. I am cultivating the habit of ignoring at the moment, as you are, rather than biting back!

As you say, the WG can be addictive too! But so many things about computers and the internet are. I've spent many happy days researching mine & the GOM's family tree; almost impossible without the internet.
grumpyoldwoman
19th Jan 11 16:01

!

-7
Sam, the Tiger

Sam, the Tiger

Grumpy Old Woman,

Hi there. Just a few morning words before coffee time at some cafe for more papers to read and mull. Glad you are not addicted to e-mail; but it does draw you to the inbox perfunctorily, doesn't it?

But you know what, WG site can be addictive for those who love to express and are in some way opinionated. Gad, we all learn so much from each other if WG is used as a forum for exchange of words and ideas.

What throws us off are the responses that crop up now and then that should be ignored. While dispensing their brands of intentional fallacy to fulfill the void in their own minds or an affective one at that to confuse in them what our contribution is and what it does or supposed to do, they turned nasty. It will and should not faze us.

Carrot got it right - the cloak of anonymity gives one false courage. Fortunately, many posters are sensible, right minded. This will be the last time I address this issue.

You've been writing in for a long time, as has MikeP, Nikki, Gainborough, Les Miz, and many, many more. I enjoy their polite company and mild jabs and jibes (no, too harsh a word) sometimes, albeit harmless. Obviously, writing is in your blood.

MikeP, I look up the site you provided on Queen's English. I'm glad you also advocated QE in your thread. Very interesting.
Sam, the Tiger
19th Jan 11 10:42

!

-28
Sam, the Tiger

Sam, the Tiger

Goodnight, and I did wonder at one point what time it'd be over where you are. You did it for me. The lightning speed of your brain is to be commended, at this late juncture - "kindness in action," and I couldn't have said it better.
Sam, the Tiger
19th Jan 11 00:18

!

-17
Carrot

Carrot

Hi Sam, I tried clicking on the link and it worked fine for me. Have not looked at it properly yet as it is getting a bit late and I have to be up early. (It is 11.45 here). I will look another day and let you know what I think.

Are you saying, by the way, that compassion is kindness in action?
Carrot
18th Jan 11 23:47

!

-13
Sam, the Tiger

Sam, the Tiger

Right on, Carrot - you did it for me. Remember to click on "Read the Charter" in blue appearing epigrammatically (sort of for want of a better term) at the very top.

Enjoy it as much as I did. It is spiritually profound.
Sam, the Tiger
18th Jan 11 23:41

!

-19
Sam, the Tiger

Sam, the Tiger

Hey Carrot,

Nice of you to drop in on us. NGO is oft-touted Non-Governmental Organization of which there are many. I guess its implication is self-explanatory. Human welfare and spiritual well-being does not seem to fall within the purview of governmental assistance, leaving it all to compassionate private citizens.

The Charter for Compassion has the imprints of this remarkable Brit Karen Armstrong with the help of other world leaders, temporal and spiritual, if I recall. It is so beautifully written, so very well thought out. KA is an ex-nun who has written many books and has appeared on our national CBC radio talk show and the TV.

Read the Chater's commitments, and tell us what you thought of them. With mercy and compassion, our Centre will hold; and through it we begin to respect the sanctity of the humankind with love, kindness and empathy; and, altruistically, care for others more than for ourselves. Perhaps we can see here a little of the relative position of kindness to compassion.

And from the Charter itself, you'll cull from it what compassion calls for, I believe. We can be kind and helpful, but without the fontal force of compassion residing in us and in the person on whom it is projected, we will do nothing more than simply utter hollow words. That is not enough.

A parting word of reminder to me - I will not be fazed by critics of everything we try to do. I never understand why it's necessary to resort to argumentum ad hominem ; why not stick closely to the content of the thread, and not to how it is delivered in good or bad English. So pointless. Also, lexicons and thesauri exist for a purpose. Use them. I do.

PS - The URL for C for C failed to deliver. I will go back to google and then walk you through it the way I did on my wife's suggestion. It's there alright, but you need to click on "Read the Charter." Stay put. I'll try once more.

http://charterforcompassion.org/
Sam, the Tiger
18th Jan 11 23:33

!

-12
electriceel

electriceel

Blimey, has the gripe-poster swallowed a dictionary?
E-Mail, lightning fast communication for friends,
but painful pestering from sellers.
Unsubscribe from those who bug you, and embrace those who you love to speak with!
electriceel
18th Jan 11 22:10

!

-20
Carrot

Carrot

Sam, The Tiger, I am quite interested in this charter for compassion but, forgive me if I am being a bit thick, but is NGO a person or an organisation or....?

Is it about compassion in life in general or in a particular sphere?

I don’t know if I just notice it more or if there are a lot more judgemental and harsh attitudes about these days. Here on the Gripe I am sometimes a bit shocked at how nasty some posters can be and wonder if it is just the anonymity that encourages it in the same way that some drivers behave in ways that they would be utterly ashamed of if they were dealing with people face to face.

I noticed that you made a distinction between “compassion” and “kindness”. How would you say they differ? I don’t mean dictionary definitions but your own understanding of the terms.
Carrot
18th Jan 11 22:02

!

-7
Boblet

Boblet

As with all mail, Email or Snailmail the old adage I adopt is, "It takes hours to write a short letter, but only minutes to write a long one"
Boblet
18th Jan 11 18:21

!

1

First Prev Page 1 of 2 Next Last

FEATURES

Gripes the News
Gripes in the pipes
The Soapbox
spinner