I thought Kodak and the film industry had died… apparently not, they are still making good money with that little roll of plastic covered in chemicals.
And I just realised how slow people’s lives used to be. For example, I took a picture on the 3rd frame of this roll, then a week went by to finish the rest of the 33 frames so I can send it in for developing. Then I had to dropped it off to one of the city locations, only to learn that they would be closed for holiday until 9 Jan. Make it 5 days to process & scan the film. If all goes well I’m finally able to see the photo on 16 Jan. Then I can print it, post on Instagram and blah blah blah.
The whole process took me over 3 weeks to see one picture – I’d most likely forget what the picture is anyway. Now on smartphones it takes less than a second. That is a stunning revolution of speed.
There’s a lot of fanfare going around on productivity, new gadgets/apps, self-made millionaires, life hacks and in general that “must-optimise-every-living-second” and “get rich quick” attitude. I reckon new technologies are awesome, and they will keep coming. What worries me is that our minds are unconsciously being shaped and re-wired to catch up with the new speed, only to get easily frustrated if anything requires a little time, wait & effort.
How many times a day do we push the home button and check if we miss out on any notifications? Or refreshing the Facebook feed, only to get a little anxious if there’s nothing new? I get those.
This sounds like a “You kids get off my lawn!” type of blog. But there are quite a lot of things I enjoy doing slowly, and wouldn’t mind it costing some money, effort or time. We need some discomfort, that’s one inevitable element of living an authentic & meaningful life. Quality craftsmanship normally requires a lot of dedicated time, and that’s a very honourable act in an instantly gratified society.