You may be set to embark on your summer vacation. Its a time to get away from the things you deal with the rest of the year. Heres my list of things to do or not do: Get away from your computer. Do you ever get the feeling that your world exists only inside 1,024 by 768 pixels? Do you ever get cramps in your mouse hand or arm? I recently filled out a Web usage survey that asked, “How many hours are you online a week?” The highest available option was “10-15 hours.” Im just getting started by then.
Put away your cell phone or PDA. The best place to do this is on the golf course. You can either play golf or do what I did recently: Attend a golf tournament. At the U.S. Senior Open, patrons were required to check all handheld devices at the gate, where they could be picked up upon leaving. I was surprised to not see anyone having handheld-deprivation seizures on the course. To be sure, as soon as some spectators retrieved their babies, they were clutching them the way Judge Smails fondled his putter Billy Barue. (Full disclosure: You may always bring your cell phone with you for emergencies. I dont want you to get caught out in the woods re-creating the “Blair Witch Project” and not be able to get help if you need it. Just keep it off.)
Read something. It doesnt matter what. A book, a magazine, a newspaper. As long as it comes in a form that consists of the material called “paper” and uses a strange substance known as “ink” to render the words visible.
Turn off your power. We all know whats been going on in California this year. Also, grassroots consumer groups have been organizing voluntary blackouts as a quasi-protest over power company greed and the Bush administrations energy policies. We had three outages recently, due to heat waves and storms. Sure, they are annoying, but the time spent in the dark can be enjoyable. I recommend seven parts gin, one part dry vermouth and ice. Shaken, not stirred. And be quick when you open and close the freezer door. We need to conserve energy.