Doing the Disconnect

I am disconnected from our network as I type this.
For some reason our broadband gets kind of screwy at times, spontaneously deciding it doesn’t have a connection to the Internet. It doesn’t last, and is usually just annoying, but sometimes it can play havoc with blogging.

Oh, not my lowbrow kind of blogging where I’m typically just rambling like now. I mean, the seriously intelligent blogging like the kind my husband Gary does. He sources damn near everything, making sure his commentary is as informed as possible.

Which is good, as it makes his posts well-constructed and informative. But it also means as he composes his blog he typically has several tabs open for different articles he is citing and subsequently wants to link. A loss of connection, even for an instant, can cause problems for him as he tries to find all those lost web pages again.

So to help him out, I’ve been staying off the network as he works, wanting to ensure no sharing bandwidth issues encourage a lost connection.

But how I have done this in the past is put my computer to sleep by closing the lid. For generally when my computer is on it is also connected. I don’t “do” anything to the connection, it just is on and when I open my computer lid and log-in it is on. I have a weird compulsion about not disconnecting it.

And yeah, I know you can disconnect it. And yeah, I’ve traveled to hotels where I have had to connect to new networks. So I’m not quite a Luddite. But I guess it’s because I had to put in serial keys and what not to get it initially set up that I get worried — unfounded sure — about disconnecting it and finding out that connecting it is a huge hassle.

For I don’t like things to be a hassle. Especially with technology. I know what I want to accomplish and hate having to deal with set up and codes and other crap. So I avoided such potential by just shutting the computer down altogether. But today I overcame such stupidity and just chose disconnect.

And it proved to be a painless action (I know this because I did test out reconnection, which was a similarly easy click). But it got me to thinking about how much can be done, really, without being Internet connected; something I sometimes forget.

Decades ago at Purdue, the Internet wasn’t on my mind or even an option. Hell, I didn’t even have a computer (not counting Atari 2600) until I met Gary. Instead, I had the library for occasional research and a dictionary when I was at home.

The Internet has definitely changed such things, with now my being able to spontaneously call up the most obscure detail if I need it for a story. It is a library on demand. But, as I am prone to do with real libraries, I can’t help but wander beyond my original research purpose, until I’m in areas of knowledge  that are not needed for the current writing.

And for both better and worse, being connected now means I can click over whenever I want to check mail, or check Facebook, or check Twitter, or check a hundred and one different things. Growing up and going to school sans computer, the mail came once a day and then, unless the landline phone rang or someone physically knocked at your door, you were pretty much done with communication and there wasn’t much else to do but focus on your work.

Oh, I’m not disparaging the current time and no way in hell do I want to back to what really wasn’t all that golden of a time. But it does occur to me as I type this and Gary is in the other room working on his blog, that maybe I should periodically just disconnect for a while; not just for Gary’s sake but for mine.

Disconnect and focus full-square on the words in my head coming out rather than all those distracting words coming in.