With my pen and paper.

I had a meeting to attend recently, incidentally it happened to be a meeting about technology and the internet on my campus. As I was still awaiting the delivery of my new laptop, I showed up with a small notepad and a clutch pencil. I don’t usually use clutch to take down notes but today I couldn't for the life of me find a pen with ink in it.

Anyway, disappearing stationary is not what this post is about, that would need a whole series of posts to cover. This post is about a question that came to my mind as a result of this situation with the notepad. So I showed up with this notepad, lay it on the desk as the main members of the meeting set up their laptops. My notepad looked small and insignificant in comparison. My clutch pencil seemed out of place. As the meeting began and the meeting members began to tap away at their keyboards, I was hit with a sudden realization of how foolish my poor notepad must look. Next to the tap tap of the fingers on the keyboards, the silent etchings taking place on my notepad must have seemed like the scribbling of a child. I must admit, I have never felt as behind in the times as I did at that moment. Maybe it was just me. Maybe the others didn't care whether or not I was on a laptop. But surely this raises a question within all of us: Does pen and paper still have a place in our society?

As a writer I have always found it natural to reach for my pen and paper first before any of my tech gadgets when it came to writing. But when I started going out into the internet and looking for others like me I began to find that the habits of writers had moved into a technological sphere. Writing has changed just as the world has, but does this mean my old habits of having a small notepad nearby should fade away? Some would say yes. Why struggle with ink and paper and dangerous paper cuts when you can make little notes and things on your phone or laptop. I don’t really know the answer to this but I will say this. I love papers. I love pens. I love paper cuts. Their thingy-ness make it real for me.

I guess that’s just another online thought bubble.


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