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Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The Black Ice of Tech

You know what I am talking about. That black ice that looks back at us from our latest bit of tech: our Ipad, out Kindle Fire, our smart phone, our Ultra book. It is a polished granite of black ice that mirrors the world in heartless black and white. We see a strange irony in the very device we are using to transport us to points distant reflects back to us our very terrestrial existence. We see our face and it is not something we want to see. For the black ice gives us who we are at that moment and the years as they have gone by.

And we have become like Rushmore. Craggy chiseled visages staring out from the black onyx as we frown at our keyboards or dab our Ipads with smudgy fingers. The tech is just fine, it is the human behind it we care not to see. And it is a distraction this face staring back at us on the plane train or in the car or in the coffee house. It is peering around our work in progress or appearing magically as the screen goes dead. And there we are. That person who we spend so much time avoiding.

And mostly we just close the lap top or put away the Ipad. But occasionally we stare and see that human. So un tech. So flesh and blood. Tech rolls on while we roll under. And the human face has no chance against that sleek black marble. We are there grimacing, frowning, grunting, groaning, trying to get across our point. And we feel a great relief when that screen flares back up and takes us way from ourselves. And we all know what is going to happen.

The hope I die before I get old generation will demand a screen that does not reflect back those years. There will be a filler, the screen saver that will save us from that awful image under the black ice. Our mortal soul.

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Books by William Hazelgrove