Tech Masks

"Sorry I'm late.  Some idiot in a horseless carriage cut me off and spooked my horse a bit," I tell Paul the Preindustrial Poet when we meet for coffee.

"I know what you mean.  I was cut off by a mustang this morning.  You know the type that a guy gets in his mid-life crisis.  I was walking down the street and he just cut me off."

"I guess I'm just in a bad mood.  Some anonymous guy wrote told me that I'm going to Hell."

"On your plog?"


"It seems like people use technology to hide.  It's like it becomes a mask.  Whether it's cutting you off in a horseless carriage or being vindictive in a plog or bumping their phonograph loud enough that the whole neighborhood hears.  They wouldn't cut you off in person or shout at you in a room or shout a song so loud that the whole city hears.  It's like the technology becomes a way to hide."

"Is it really masking anything?'

"What do you mean?"

"I understand that it's unpleasant.  I get that.  And I understand that people use technology to hide.  Or they forget the human side behind it.  But cutting people off, making mean comments and the like - isn't that simply a part of the human condition?"


  1. it is, but so is decorum (sp?). Our technologies change what it means to interact, they change our definition of "decency". When these things change the human condition just might change as well.

  2. At our last school district, my friend was told that he was going to hell by Christian parents because he is a Buddhist. They said it to his face. We both left Religion Public High School, but leaving the internet is less possible.