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One and all look! You can get your tiny tot a cute little outfit promoting Farmville!
Anyone that would buy their infant an “online farmer” onesie should buy themselves the infamous hat:
It is a pretty sad case when people start sporting their vices in bright colors on apparel.
Another Facebook addict product is this one:
This is pitiful. Jest sayin’.
(Source: http://www.zazzle.com/online_farmer_green_tractor_tshirt-235031941506485279 and http://www.zazzle.com/facebook_addict_hat-148619359426783766 and http://www.zazzle.com/i_can_quit_farmville_facebook_addict_keychain-146973476334000107)
So Dr. Boli [http://drboli.wordpress.com] is at it again with his sometimes bizarre, sometimes comic, and sometimes delightfully pointed sense of fun. Are the following advertisements from his Celebrated Magazine poking fun at our pretty much illiterate generation? Just maybe.
- “The Blandville Branch Library will offer a one-hour talk entitled “What Is a Book?” on Saturday, May 2, at 1 p.m. The audience will have the opportunity to see and handle several books after the talk.”
- “THE BLANDVILLE BRANCH Library will be having a Giant Book Sale beginning Monday and continuing until all the books are gone. The Library staff have decided that the Library can no longer afford to maintain a collection of books when computer workstations are so expensive.”
- “The Community Television Viewers’ Association will be offering a free workshop all day Tuesday. With the Internet rapidly overtaking television in popularity, we are concerned that the skills required to absorb purely passive entertainment are being lost. Third-generation television viewers will be on hand to teach you the secrets to a rewardingly inert television-viewing experience. “
One reader funnily commented about the last two announcements, ”I fear that you may have inadvertently posted real news in the [above] paragraphs. Please try harder at parody and satire in the future.”
The Bottom Line: People do not read anymore; instead, they spend time on distracting social networking sites like Facebook. This has disastrous effects on personal lives. This will have a disastrous effect on culture at large. If reading continues to decrease and writing to deteriorate, we shall all soon be certifiable barbarians. Which somehow doesn’t appeal to me.
Conversation (and here I mean real, live, face-to-face conversation) is officially a Lost Art. Facebook deserves at least an honorable mention in the subtle slaughter of true conversation. For the record, I loathe (yes, loathe) the modern habit of ignoring the person right next to oneself while texting rapidly, playing an inane game on the phone, or skimming Facebook.
“Without the habit of conversation in homes, schools, and social occasions, the memorable reality of people, the sheer enjoyment of the play of speech, the liveliness of the truth, and the medicine of common sense leave the realm of ordinary experience and become the vestiges of an ancient past, and the whole quality of life becomes reduced to the banal and pathetic.” -The Lost Arts of Modern Civilization, by Mitchell Kalpakgian
As you may have noted, I am adding a page entitled “100 Household Items With More Value Than Facebook.” Today I am thrilled to introduce the first item on my list…
#1: The Toothpick. It struck me last week that the toothpick is a most ingenious household item. Generally found in the kitchen, the toothpick has such a vast number of uses that it is impossible to count them all. A few of these uses are particularly notable. For example, the toothpick has been used for over three million years for pricking cakes, muffins, breads, and unruly bananas. Scientists disagree as to the reasoning behind this use. One group says that the puncture is supposed to remind the food item that “flour it was, and to flour it shall return.” This seems improbable because it does not explain the bananas. Another interesting toothpick use is that of the dueling toothpick. They stopped putting this in the history books, but toothpicks were universally used for all forms of personal warfare before swords were invented. You have probably heard, but rumor has it that the Prince of Sweden has a morbid fear of toothpicks. I can present no solid evidence for this, but I have a great deal of faith that, were someone to run wildly towards him with a toothpick, he would be afeared. Unusually enough, toothpicks can also be glued on construction paper in the shape of alphabet letters. This was used as an exercise for children in kindergarten until the 1960s, when the children inexplicably stopped figuring out how to make the ”C” and “S”. Moreover, if you so desire, you can put a toothpick halfway into your mouth and gnaw your teeth up and down. If you add a hat and mud, you may make a pretty convincing Iowa farmer impersonation. But no guarantees, for even toothpicks are not without imperfections. There are so many toothpick uses that I could go on for days, but all things must stop somewhere. So, log off Facebook today and spend some time pondering the toothpick. These little guys have a lot of wisdom packed into their skinny wooden frames.
Are you aware that 20% of our high school graduates can be classified as functionally illiterate?
Does this perhaps have something to do with the fact that boys and girls read, on average, a mere 30-40 minutes a day?
Compare this with the fact that American children ages 8-18 devote about 8 hours a day to entertainment media (television, computers, smart phones, etc.) Keep in mind that this does not take texting and talking on the phone into consideration.
You just can’t have it all. If it’s true that you don’t have to burn the books to destroy a culture, you just have to stop people from reading them, then we’re not looking at a pleasant future. And really, if you are spending eight hours a day on “entertainment media”, when are you engaging your mind in real learning? I think this helps to explain the quality (well, lack thereof) of the kind of conversation that takes place on Facebook.