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Breaking Free From the Machine
My cursor blinks, teasing me on the bright screen. It's another day, and I'm diving headfirst into my digital life. Browser tabs clutter the top of my screen, and I can't help but wonder why I stick with Chrome. Maybe it's the Pokemon-inspired logo that reminds me of my son's favorite game. But as I navigate through tabs, gliding through a sea of folders and bookmarks, I realize I've spent more time with my browser than with my own flesh and blood.
There are people inside the machine, too, but they feel like faint shadows during the day. Sure, they give me praise and "like" my posts, but sometimes it feels like a fleeting, impersonal connection. Even Zoom calls can feel dishearteningly artificial. I long for genuine connections, for being physically present with humans in the same room. However, for the better part of the past year, I've been confined to a desk within the confines of my own home.
I miss my friend, Jake. Our lunches at Gecko's were unforgettable - swapping stories and tales of our lives. But such encounters have become too inefficient, leaving us with mere video calls. Lunch with a friend is starting to feel like a luxury, and time is always in short supply, so we make do.
I wish I had a better understanding of the people behind the keyboard. But tasks pile up, and as an entrepreneur, deadlines loom over every minute of my day. Sometimes it feels like I'm just completing empty pages for others' approval, with little room for creativity or exploration. Type, delete. Rewrite, edit, revise - sometimes, by the time I'm finished, all the original passion is gone.
Most early mornings are dedicated to brewing espresso shots or preparing a steaming pot of black coffee. I don't know if I'm addicted, but the ritual is addictive itself, and I appreciate the leisurely inefficiency of the moment. By grinding my own beans, I rebel against the all-encompassing world of technology. We are so incredibly productive now. We check off more tasks than ever before. But how much of our lives are spent living inside a machine?
To escape, I venture out to coffee shops where baristas like Sky, Jamie, and Dan greet me with genuine smiles. They don't work with computers or earn much money, but they seem content. And in those moments, I am reminded of what true joy feels like.
Maybe it's time to break free from the machine and inhale the world outside.