Sunday, July 01, 2007

Another lovely evening

Maybe it's just that I'm so supremely happy to be headed home after another 10 hour day on my feet -- but the evenings on my way out of Pt Defiance Park the last couple of nights have been really beautiful. Last night was more pinks and oranges, more evening strollers, and lots of kids cruising for fun.

I have a new theory - cell phones are ruining everything. The sheer volume of people walking through the fair with their little gadgets glued to the side of their faces is enormous. Everyone is yammering away, completely oblivious to their surroundings or whatever else is going on. They don't even notice the booths, can't hear the music stages, they aren't focused on who or what is around them. So in actuality, it's like they aren't even there. How can you enjoy what you are doing when you are completely unaware of what is happening around you? There was far less shopping, far less chatting, far less interacting with people who were at least looking at your work. People are stumbling through the motions of just getting through the fair to the other side.

I guess I'm just confused about it all. What's the point of going? How do you know if you've missed something great? Not to mention all that "living in the moment" cliche - but the living in the phone call is plain dumb. I understand the convenience of using it briefly to keep track of family and friends who are interested in other things at the fair, and using the phone to meet up after parting separate ways for a few minutes.

But as I was watching the parade of yakkers file past yesterday I was reflecting on how it was when we were kids. The whole family had to march along in tandem, looking at what everybody else wanted to stop for. Sometimes it was overwhelmingly boring or irritating. But other times it was kind of interesting. Stuff that one of my sisters liked, and I never would have given the time of day, turned out to be pretty cool. At least I learned what they were interested in, and in that way, got to know them better. Or when we had to stop for what seemed like eternity to learn about something Mom or Dad was fascinated in - sometimes we had an actual learning experience, or bonded with the folks, or whatever.

I'm probably being overdramatic about it, but even though from outward appearances all the cell phone yakking seems to be creating more intimate relationships, to me it feels more isolating, insulating and boring. While you're spending a bit more time with the few folks in your address book, you are missing another whole world out there that you can only experience when you are walking with your eyes open.

Or, maybe I'm just grumpy because sales yesterday were half of what we did the year before. With the exception of a rare few, every artist at the show was doing horribly. What gives?