Subina’s Media Diary

I should be tired of this now – the same diet every day. Before my kids burst into my room, I update my email, browse through twitter, and open the NYT on my phone. None of these works get complete. By the time the kids go out of the door, the loo awaits with the New Yorker, the LRB or the Private Eye. I manage to read half an article because I am always late for class.

On the way to class, a BBC podcast – In Our Time – often tells me about some philosopher or a historical event that I promptly forget.It’s also a great way to fall asleep.  On the road, I often check twitter and occasionally facebook. When I get frustrated, I read the headline of NY Times and then give up on news. It’s too depressing. Self control has been a great app. While working, I turn off facebook and twitter and get a solid hour. Otherwise, I flit – between writing and reading some random post on facebook that makes me numb. At night, I read – printed articles – so that I don’t get too tempted to browse aimlessly.

But the weekend was a special one. We were headed to NY on a bus – and that meant books were to be read. I managed to read a story by W Summerset Maugham  called ‘Rain’ – an assignment for class, on the bus. Then I read a book that I have been struggling with for a while – ‘An association of small bombs’ by Karan Mahajan – a story of an explosion in New Delhi. The fact that internet was intermittent meant I could really read.

In NY, my phone acted as a map. If you have five and six years olds, you soon realise that the best way to quieten them is to show them a moving blue dot on a complicated subway map. I showed my children films – on Netflix – projected on to a big screen. I watched Disney’s Tarzan and Finding Dory with my children. I used my phone to call and send text messages – and it felt that that’s what phones were made for.

On Monday, as the bus left NY, I held on to my phone and realized that the weekend is over. I went to my weekday mode, browsed twitter once again, read about politics in Nepal and when I got to US politics, I gave up. Twitter is way too obsessive and if I were smart, I’d have quit a long time ago.