In my piece from a year ago, The Rosy Scent Trail of Ms. Pusey, I extolled the virtues and mental clarity of not having a mobile phone. That hiatus has lasted from June 2015 until now, almost a year and a half, and I have loved it. The peace of it. All the books I have read. The non-addictiveness; the sense of being detached.



But for one reason and another, I have had to capitulate. It was essentially kind of forced on me.Being uncontactable is essentially  selfish, I suppose, and no longer tenable (and in the majority of people’s eyes, seriously weird. We don’t have a working house phone either……………..)



So, anyway, I am now the ‘proud’ (and already addicted, and more insomniac, seriously, even after just five days) owner of an iPhone 7. I feel more twitchy, and compulsive, and itching to always check. The ergonomic intimate pleasure, and the smoothness.The plugged-inness. The gleaming, irresistible lure of the brainwashed  consumerist Matrix.



And it has definitely disturbed my inner composure (not that there was much of that going on this crazy, mangled fascist of a year in any case), but at the same time, I can’t deny for a moment that I am enjoying, now that the cold has set in and the end of term and its inevitable alienations and exhaustions begun, the immediate contact with my Loved One. The instant messages that flash up on the screen; the cozy feeling of having him tucked away hidden in my pocket.



And  I feel visually really excited, and turned on: that side of me, I realize now, was muted and turned out, me always grabbing Duncan’s phone when I wanted to take something: but now I can just take my own. Random pictures. Just for the hell of it. Just to mutate the boring day into something more curious.




So here are some snaps from my environs taken over the last few days. In the miserable sleety snow of yesterday, when things happened that put me in one of the foulest possible moods of my entire life. The lurches of today. And the marvellous banality of the everyday, and how you can twist it, and edit it, as your eye, and your brain, see fit.












































Filed under JAPAN PHOTOGRAPHY, Psychodrama

15 responses to “THE END OF THE EXPERIMENT

  1. Welcome to the tech world. I am a lot older than you and thought I would never be technical…but I have become very much so. I own a MacBook Air, an iPad Air, an iPhone 6+, an Apple watch and three iPods (each one in a different room so my music is always available). I am not like the younger people that I constantly am on (or looking at) my phone, but I do check it from time to time (except at work but that’s where the Apple Watch comes in handy). When I am out with people, I do not sit there and text unless it’s something extremely important. However, all these devices are now an integral part of my daily life. And taking instant photos is also fun. I just realized while writing this that I did not take one photo yesterday at our Thanksgiving dinner. But I know I will make up for it over the weekend.
    Enjoy your new technology.

  2. DDJ

    Arrggghhhh… Am I the last man standing?

    I’ve talked on a cellie twice ever and you couldn’t pay me to own one. I’d disconnect the home phone as well if that didn’t truly make one a non-entity in the view of the world and make all else nearly impossible.

    Occasionally I suspend my IP service for a few months. My only internet access is then through the local library.

    …Sweet peace and Liberty.

    Demons, Gods, angels, ghosts … yōkai, obake and yūrei all crowd into quiet corners of the rooms… We drink tea and sample perfumes through the night.

    • Oh god this makes me feel like mourning. Seriously, I feel overcrowded already and my dreams are much more manic and frenetic. Glad to know that someone knows exactly what I am talking about.

  3. Your phone shots are amazing! Best use of iPhone ever.

    I will avoid having a cellphone for as long as possible. I am — or I guess, I was (!)– like you. I like being detached. I don’t like the feeling of being . . . available. I don’t want the pressure of anyone saying, “I tried calling you,” followed by the accusatory, “but you had your phone off, so I had to leave a message” and then the coup de grâce, “AND YOU NEVER GOT BACK TO ME.” Cuz I would NOT be inclined. I hate the beholden-ness, the obligation, the subordinating my inclinations to someone else’s agenda. I really enjoy being AWOL and having complete freedom from human contact or connectedness. (Ric takes things one step further: he’d rather not even have voicemail on his landline.) I watch those old movies, the ones where guys like Fred MacMurray/Walter Neff have work desks with one plain ordinary phone. If they’re not there in their office, the phone just rings and rings. Even if it’s the most important call in the world, they’re not there to answer it. In the movies, it adds all sorts of nail-biting drama that we’ve lost in our own real lives. We never miss The Call. In a way, that’s good, and that’s why having an iPhone is a practical thing.

    Call me impractical.

    • (Sigh…………)

      You understand. And I have just woken up from THE most manic and crowded dream. I know it is connected to having the phone on my person. You do realise that we misanthropes (even though I love people) are the freaks of society?

      • I know, I know, fellow freak! And yet my favourite people are not “people persons.” That’s the irony. And I usually dislike anyone who claims to be a people person. Misanthropes are generally people I want to hang out with. I don’t love people at large, but I love certain friends of mine, unabashedly. I’m warm and affectionate/demonstrative by nature, yet introverted, and they are, too. I think we’re maybe also, hmm, selective? And yet I can really enjoy the company of perfect strangers, depending. I think extroverts/people-person-types are an American ideal. It usually comes with a great deal of (not necessarily earned) self-confidence. Which reminds me: I don’t usually like self-confident people. I like self-effacing people who also have a well-developed sense of humour, especially with the ability to laugh at themselves. I think of the English that way, and the Irish, and New Zealanders. And Canadians, rah rah!!

        I think perhaps people like us are sensitive in many different ways, and find it easy to be overstimulated. I know that’s true for me. And yet sometimes I love being overstimulated, if it’s by something original and/or creative and/or beautiful and/or emotionally true (painful or not). I know that for me, perfume is just right. I can never get overstimulated by great fragrance — or rather, I adore being overstimulated by great fragrance.

  4. David

    I like this use of your cell phone– to feel the presence of your loved one. All the rest is just…. well, the rest.
    I think FB and Instagram allow people to feel celebrated. Who doesn’t want to be liked and followed? Who doesn’t want to know what it’s like to be Madonna? Maybe me– I never post anything. Much like I never talk about my night dreams. (I always remember that line from “The Sheltering Sky” about how boring it is to listen to other people’s dreams).
    I try not to read too much into it. I sometimes like being all connected. Then I walk away from it. I like the feeling that I can give it up. I like that there are other diversions in life. Someone once told me that I am trying to be elusive by not posting on FB. It’s probably true. Who doesn’t want to be like Greta Garbo, safely hidden behind her dark sunglasses on her anonymous walks in Manhattan?

    • All of this makes beautiful, perfect sense to me. Thanks for commenting.

      • David

        You take these photos with your phone? You capture something very dreamlike. Your dreams aren’t boring.

      • Actually, the strange ones of the trees and the chair by the sea were coming back from ma hospital (long story) and I was feeling SO pissed off and miserable as it was SO cold and the bus was cold but though the bus windows these images pricked my senses in some ways and I just snapped them. The blurry window definitely makes them look dream like and in truth I was never that fond of ‘reality’!

  5. I would be utterly lost without all my devices, they keep me connected to my loved ones and to the world. I looks so forward to my husband’s phone calls and my mother’s also. I adore technology.

    • Yes well this is the other side of it. The connectedness = the addictiveness. It’s getting the extrovert/introvert balance right for me. I can’t STAND being overcrowded, but at the same time I don’t want to be lonely! Such a demanding creature I am.

  6. emmawoolf

    That’s the thing. I also have a new gadget, a better, quicker, cuter mobile (a little iPhone SE in rose gold – it is a thing of malevolent beauty!) I love being connected to others…. I am a blabbermouth and want to “reach out” and tell people when I feel full of enthusiasm for something… which, right now, is often. See, writing this is an example. I didn’t need to go on here and write this nonsense. But I’m in love with life at the moment.

    However, all this is not good for me (or thee). I want/need to step away from it all. But the pull of the devices… “go on, touch me! Have a look! You know you want to!” It’s too much. x

    • But your current love for life, after being down for a while, is extremely infectious. Perhaps it is the right time for me to have my own gadget (even if I CONTINUALLY keep losing it). Being disconnected is only appealing up to a miserable, hermit like point. x

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