Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Tuning Out

Yesterday when I was walking to school I was in my own little world of random thoughts and had my IPod on some random country song from the 90's not paying a lick of attention to the world around me. This for me is typical. I started to think about tuning out the world and well does tuning out the world ever lead us to tune out ourselves? That sounds crazy I am sure and I know people are like go lord this girl has too much free time on her hands and well it is truly the opposite. Any was today on my walk to work I couldn't help but start back on the thought track I was on yesterday and it has lead me to think about these questions:
  • Is there a line between tuning out the world and tuning out you?
  • Is there ever too much tuning?
  • Do we lose touch with everything and everyone?
  • Can you lose touch?
  • Is it bad to lose touch? I mean for me I love not watching the news every night and hearing about all the evil things that happend that day.
  • Everyone needs some time to think but are we really tuning in to our thinking when we are rocking it out to our IPods or other devices designed to entertain us, keep us amused and occupied?
  • Everyone needs some time to hide out from their thoughts and send their brain on a little min vaca but do we take to many min vaca's and there for are not spending enough time with our thoughts anymore?
  • Why can I no longer walk down the street, ride the bus, train, or subway without having to have my IPod with me?
  • Why can I no longer go to the gym and ride the bike unless I have my kindle with me?
  • Why can I no longer jog on the treadmill without having my IPod or the TV on?
  • Why can I not even send a simple email or cook dinner without having the TV on? (Sadly most of the time in Korean and I don't really understand that much Korean)
  • What did people do before all this readymade entertainment?

Sadly as I type this right now I have my IPod on and I am trying to tune things out so that I can really "hear myself think" but really how can I hear myself think if I am bopping up and down to an old Jo Dee Messina song? How much attention am I really giving to my thoughts? Why should my poor brain have to yell above everything else to get my attention?
As I looked around yesterday and today I noticed that I am not the only one tuning out. Korea people are very big on watching TV on their phones and will do it as they walk down the street, ride the bus/train/subway and don’t even bother to look up most of the time to see where they are going or what is coming up ahead. Almost everyone here has some sort of music player and is hooked up to it like it is an IV in a life or death situation. Oddly finding out that other people also tune out does not really make me feel any better.
Will tuning back in to life make me feel better? Am I feeling bad? Is my brain just mad about being ignored and left out? These thoughts made me take a minute to stop and think about all the times when I may of not been paying attention when I should have been. A lot of things come to mind but sadly the biggest one is when I am walking or better yet crossing the street and should be paying attention to what is going on around me yet I am not and sadly it has almost caused me to be hit by crazy taxi drivers who seem to think they are in a Nascar race on more than one occasion or a delivery guy on a moped who seems to think that sidewalks are the perfect place for him to drive fast and erratically. Well dang after that important update from my brain I started to think of other things, like maybe that time I burnt dinner, or forgot to put detergent in with the wash, or turn off the heat when I left the apartment, and the list goes on and on. However I know I cannot blame everything on my poor little pink IPod, but why not? In blaming it am I not just blaming myself?
So what do you do? Do you turn everything off? If so how long do you turn it off for? Forever is not really an option but how long is then? Do I need any of these things? What did people do in the old days? Why does it seem like today nobody can enjoy silence? What is wrong with silence?
I just noticed that 3 songs have passed and I didn’t even notice as I typed this. So now I am wondering if maybe we can only tune in to one thing, the IPod or thoughts. How in the world did I get all through high school and college thinking that it was a great idea to watch TV or play music as I was studying for a test or writing a paper? Maybe this is just me getting old and losing my ability to be cool and hip and think at the same time.
Humm well I guess here is the part where you expect me to say that I am going to turn my IPod, the TV and the Kindle off. Well let’s not go crazy for starters I would go crazy without my Kindle or well a book (I have not gone that far to the dark side yet that I cannot just read a normal paper book). And well I walk a lot and I don’t see having my IPod on for the walk, bus ride, or train ride any different than having my radio on in the car as I drive someplace so good luck getting it to turn off anytime soon.

So what have I accomplished than? Did my poor brain spend the past two days yelling at the top of its lungs to get attention for nothing? No, I am not that tuned out. I am now going to try to turn things off every now and then and take time to think, especially if I have a lot on my mind or something that I need to be focusing on like those blogs about Singapore.

Time to try to tune back in! Hey I always did love to people watch maybe if I tune back in I can do more of that again! 

Ok well that is my rant and ramble for the day! Hope everyone’s week is going great!


Chas said...

This is a very thought provoking blog Megan. I never really put too much thought into the topic before. I don't listen to music when I wallk because I am one of those people you wouldn't pay attention to my surroundings and probably run into something or get hit by a car. We do listen to music when we work out or when we are at home. I don't think we do it to tune out, its relaxing or worshiping..well depending on what you are listening too. I understand what you are saying. It made me think..humm sometimes we need to turn off the music and listen to the birds sing...Okay. I know this isn't a deep thought provoking comment...but I am reading your blog and like this post!

Megan said...

Haha thanks girl. Sadly I think this is just one of those ramble, ramble, ramble post where I talk and talk but I don't think anything really important was said. Oh the looks in side my random brain! And I almost get hit by a car on a daily bases.