Archive for November 25th, 2012

Tweets In The Woods

by lizard

I was walking in the woods with my wife and kids today when we heard the explosion. And felt it. The reverberation off the hills almost sounded like secondary explosions. Thankfully my kids weren’t terrified, and we didn’t have our dogs with us, so they didn’t freak out and take off.

I wanted to know what the hell had happened, so I pulled out my goddamn/fantastic iPhone to consult the Twitter. I put out a tweet, then scanned my feed. Sure enough a few tweets from fellow Missoulians popped up.

For example, at 8:53am, @Lgpguin tweeted:

Sonic boom? Earthquake? WTH just shook Slant Street ‘hood?! Missoula

And a minute later @stacyrye tweeted:

Holy booms! Anyone else hear that huge boom that shook windows just now?

By the end of our walk in the woods, the official twitter account of the Missoulian tweeted confirmation (at 9:28am) that the explosion came from the landfill, where illegally disposed dynamite was found, then detonated.

I’m somewhat ambivalent about how quickly my goddamn/fantastic iPhone gave me the answer to the mystery of the Big Boom. But the problem isn’t the technology, it’s how we use it.

I probably checked my phone a dozen times during our “nature” walk. Allowing that intrusion of technology to pull me away from being present with my kids is just a shitty thing to do.

I delayed my leap into technology as long as I could because I knew. I used my first ridiculous iMac as basically an electronic typewriter until 2007, and I didn’t get a “smart” phone until a little over a year ago.

Now, with Twitter, it’s easy to get overwhelmed.

Blogs are mostly ponds, sometimes great lakes. Twitter’s the sea. And it can be a very weird, fucked up sea, where even the Israeli assault on Gaza plays out in 140 characters.

All that said, WTF Allied Waste and Missoula County Sheriff’s department? A little heads up would have been nice.

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