I had dinner with a former student visiting Seattle a few months ago. We were talking about social media and when I mentioned, in passing, that I never tried Instagram. Her response was quick: If you’re not on Instagram you don’t exist.
Long after the dinner ended and much of the conversation faded from memory, her comment stayed with me because of the indignation I felt. I am not on Instagram, and as far as I know, I exist.
I am a late technology adapter for a number of reasons, I love the real world – the sequential patterns of the day. I love contemplation and the slow act of thinking things through. Perhaps more simply, I like looking at real things. But I also have avoided technology as an act of preservation, my days feel fragmented even without the churning waterfall of virtual imagery. No day feels ever long enough, or fully attended to and at night I wonder what I missed. My goal is never to escape the real world, just the opposite, I want to enter into it more fully.
And yet…. While my reluctance for social media has kept me focused over the years I have missed meeting a community of people who fate hasn’t brought to my door.
So, I am my updating my website, writing a blog and joining Instagram and I want to know you.
(Image Credit: Elizabeth Zanzinger, Aristides Atelier graduate)