On Attention. Span.

There are two kinds of people in the world. Those who get out of bed within half an hour of waking up, and those who don’t. I’m in the latter group. I’ll be on my phone for an hour if my schedule allows me, not doing anything productive. I’ll be on Reddit, then Twitter, then my email, then proceed to put my phone down and think about leaving bed. Then I’ll say “Nah” and go back to Reddit and Twitter, seeing if there’s anything new in the past 15 seconds.

This is the problem with this new world we live in. Information comes quick and in snippets. We want to see things fast but not know a lot about it. We’re in a constant speed date with the internet – always looking for something that interests us, but never being able to settle on just one thing.

I’m pretty sure that our generation is going to be most difficult generation to take care of when we’re old. Old people just sit around all day, enjoy the breeze, read a book, smell the flowers. We’re not going to be like that. We’ll tell our grandkids, “Hey kid, I’m bored, take me out. No I don’t want to go out anymore. Give me my phone. Where’s the TV remote? I don’t want to read you a story. I haven’t read a book in years and I won’t start now.”

We have the shortest attention spans of any generation. One of the best ways you can see the difference is comparing a popular movie made decades ago to movies now. Let’s take for example, The Godfather. Classic movie by legendary director Francis Ford Copolla, considered one of the best movies ever made and the highest grossing movie of 1972. The film feels – slow. It has a great story, great characters, and the best endings of any movie, but it feels so draggy. Cuts last longer. The plot kinda meanders around different places. There’s a lot of characters and a lot of dialogue. And for a lot of the time, not a lot happens. Compare that pace to modern box-office hits like a recent popular movie, like The Dark Knight. It’s fast paced, an action packed. Things move quicker. Boom boom boom. Murder. Punch. Boom again. Dramatic music. Harvey Dent, boo hoo. Murder again. End Credits (sorry for the spoilers). At the end of the movie I’m almost gasping for air and sweating. I’ve felt like I’ve just ran a 200 metre race. Watching old movies now instead feels like running through quicksand, because modern media has trained me to expect fast, flashy sequences. I expect people to get punched and cars to explode every 5 minutes, otherwise I’m out.

Maybe it’s time we take a slower look at life. Maybe quicksanding everything down isn’t a bad idea? Go read a book. Turn of Twitter. Watch an old movie. Maybe through that, we’ll learn to appreciate life a little bit more.

Anyways, that’s all from me. I got bored of writing this, so I’m going back to Reddit.

 

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