Saturday, April 28, 2007

QUOTES | Boredom

Dorothy W posted some thoughts on Elizabeth Gilbert's Eat, Pray, Love recently. This excerpt is just one of those things that came up as I was thinking about our inability to stay at rest:

Perhaps boredom is the distinctive quality of the modern Western mind. Always, in the West, there is a friction between the self and time; in Africa, India, and Asia many people hava subsistence relation to time, taking it as it comes. On a train in Kerala I'd met a man a few miles into what was going to be a seventy-hour rail journey. He was completely unperturbed by the prospect. My own journey was going to last only three hours, I was thoroughly enjoying it — but I was already looking forward to it being over with. The more travel speeds up, the more acute this feeling becomes. When it took weeks or months to travel by ship from Europe to America, no one suffered these agonies of impatience. Increased speed has served mainly to accelerate our impaence at any delay. What will we wait for when it takes no time to get anywhere? … Alternatively, only when everyone in the world is susceptible to boredom will the project of globalization be complete. In the meantime I'd had enough: I wanted to get back to the hotel I had no desire to be in.

~ Yoga For People Who Can't Be Bothered To Do It by Geoff Dyer

It also reminded me that I have a post on Yoga for People in my draft folder, yet to be completed. Yes, I am a lazy blogger.

1 comment:

Dorothy W. said...

That's a great passage. It's interesting and depressing to think of boredom as distinctly western and something that's spreading (like a disease). But it strikes me as true -- our relationship to time is so often so very messed up.