DAN THE MAN HAS a plan… But do we think he can? No phone, PC, TV or Xbox for seven days to raise money for the UK Autism Foundation and prove wrong his network of incredulous technophiles! Roguemusic.co.uk finds out more!
After posing my plan, of going one week without my phone, to my facebook network, I came to realise that there aren’t many people out there who would be willing to entertain the idea, or who have any faith in anyone else completing what should be a simple challenge.
This factor annoyed me slightly – are we really so reliant on the gadgets and gizmos that we OWN for convenience? Or do these same artefacts of progress actually OWN us? That’s the funny thing about attachments: the more we endeavour to control and dominate our environment, the more our environment tends to control and dominate us. But of course we’d never actually admit this. I was further perturbed to learn that previous attempts by others to achieve a similar goal, in various parts of the world, had ended in failure. This to me seemed absurd!
As a child of the nineties I bore witness to a lifestyle that seemed to be trundling along quite nicely, without the aid of mobile phones, email and the constant, instant intrusion of device generated tones and bleeps; days that were slower in pace I’m sure, but only by today’s standards; If I missed your call on the landline, you’d call me back if it was important, or even better, write a letter! These days we live like doctors-on-call, and with no retaining fee! Don’t get me wrong though, I’m not shirking the technological age, I embrace it.
But I also embrace that place we came from: naked, vulnerable, with only our anatomy and dexterity to aid us in daily life; the primitive man whom, were it not for him, we would not even be here to appreciate such a modern civilisation.
So, as of Monday 22 November I intend to power down my phone, as well as some other similar machines, and live a simpler life for one week. The emphasis here is on the more modern devices used for convenience and entertainment – computer, television, amplification, x box, etc. Amenities such as the bath and washing machine are ok but anything that allows me to have a bit of fun and requires power is quite forbidden.
The only exception will be my work computer which I need to send emails from. Unfortunately I still have to pay the bills and I cannot take any time off work to do this. I will certainly not be using it for any personal reasons however. I hope, in light of this stipulation, that people do not see this as a half-cocked attempt. I still think this will be quite a challenge!
I will be pretty much uncontactable for the whole week, so I urge my friends and family to knock on my door should they wish to see me, or write me a letter, should a message be important. I am already anxious in anticipation (to my surprise) but I have enough books, and I can still play my acoustic guitar. I can also keep a log of my experience using a pencil and paper, which I will do.
Thanks for reading, and please feel free to donate. All proceeds to UK Autism Foundation.