May 15, 2004

How you see your world

A very kind reader left an interesting comment:

"It seems to me that blogging about experiences is very much like wandering around with a camera at hand--when I have an eye out for a photo, I tend to see more along the way because I am really looking. I find that even knowing I have an outlet for my personal observations helps me to pay more attention to the things happening in my life, especially the little things I sometimes forget."

I have kept her words in mind over the past week or two and think that she's really on to something. I look at life differently now, since I've started to blog. I pay more attention to my own internal dialogue to see whether it contains anything interesting enough to write about. I take more mental snap shots.

Mental snap shots are something I've done for a long time. I remember sitting in Paris one night, about 10 years ago, with a very dear friend. He had his camera and took many, many pictures. I had a camera and took very few. We were sitting behind Saint Sulpice, it was night time, and he wanted to take another picture. I suggested instead that he take a mental one, something I was doing. I was worried that on this, his first trip to Paris, we wasn't taking the time to appreciate the details of what he was seeing. The camera, I felt, gave him the illusion of having seen something because he could put it to his eye, click, and turn away, secure in his belief that he had now seen the thing he took a picture of but never having actually seen it. So, we sat and I tried to show him to look instead closely, to live in that moment of observation, and to fix it in his memory. I still have a good recollection of that evening and how the building looked. I'll have to ask him if he does.

There, I think I may have just said the same thing she said but in many more words.

The one thing I'm concerned about with this, however, is that I don't become too detached, too much the observer and too little the participant. If you are always looking, you forget to play. Then, the blog makes you like my friend with the camera. Something to reflect on, perhaps.

Posted by Random Penseur at May 15, 2004 08:56 AM
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