Friday, January 23, 2009

Help - I'm imprisoned by my Gmail

It's finally happened; the only way I can write a blog post today is to NOT open my Gmail account. Clearly I am not following the advice of Julie Morgenstern in her book Never Check E-Mail in the Morning. Morgenstern writes "E-mail is not evil. It is just a little dangerous." Mmmn...debatable?

Alas, I've become one of those persons who has too many e-mails to keep track of, on too many topics. I pride myself on having lots of "conversation folders" for different issues but they seem to have mutated in recent months. On some days I'm even what Morgerstern calls a "Power e-mailer" - someone who receives more than fifty e-mails a day and sends out a minimum of twenty. Who-hoo - too bad this doesn't come with a power salary.

As I sit here in the library writing this I am realizing how rarely I have been reading books lately, compared to other times in my life. And I'm spending more time on the computer than ever before. As Police Chief Marge Gunderson said in the great Coen brothers' movie Fargo, I think they may be, you know, connected.

No, I'm not going to write about strategies for managing your e-mail and not letting it take over your life. Efficiency strategies are like diet tips. You know you need to eat more vegetables and less Doritos. Doing so is another story.

So instead, I'll share my resolution for the new year: Less screen time, more book time. Wish me luck. Maybe there's a novel about a group of Facebook friends who meet nefarious ends after they ignore a certain person's friend request.....


Anonymous said...

Hi, I have the unusual situation of a husband at home for two weeks due to a foot infection. He is healing fine, can walk and drive (it is his left foot and he has a special boot), and yes, we should enjoy this extra time together. But what do we seem to covet the most? Computer time. I love it and I hate it............Pam

Anonymous said...

I think for a stay at home parent, I tend to get WAY too many's how I communicate with teachers, people who live far away, etc etc etc. Obviously, I could never be president and give up my email (I had nightmares when I heard President Obama had to give up his Blackberry...OMG...I just kept thinking: how do I email the boys' teachers?) Fortunately, he doesn't have to go 'cold turkey'.


babs m said...

I hear you! I spend about 10 hours a day on the computer between work, blogging, building a social network to support my blog and ultimately my writing habit... Clients certain;y use email to reach me and I encourage them to do so. Much more likely to find me there than in reach of a phone. Now if someone can just teach the computer to make espresso....we could be in heaven. :)

Carol said...

Wow - ten hours a day! If computers also did laundry we'd really be home free!

It's the building a social network to support my blog part that I feel I never do enough of. Maybe I need to give myself a "comment quota" or something.