Shteyngart on disconnecting

Sunday, July 18, 2010

In an essay in the New York Times, Gary Shteyngart explains why he loves his new "iTelephone" but still dreams of taking the train upstate to disconnect:

Soon my friends will get off that Amtrak, they will help me roast an animal and some veggies, even as they point their iTelephones at the sky, praying for rain. Their prayers will not be answered. Connecting. . . . will flash impotently on the screen, but they will not connect. In the meantime, something “white nights” will be happening out there; the sun has set and yet it has not. With the animal safely in our stomachs, with single malts and beers before us, we can read or talk softly about what we’re reading, about the glory and sadness of finding ourselves this close to the middle of our existence

Just for fun, compare that essay to Bob Herbert's get-off-my-lawn op-ed, where he pats himself on the back for learning how to use "tweeting" properly and shakes his fist at all the crazy internet kids. By the way, I couldn't be more excited for Shteyngart's new book, Super Sad True Love Story, to come out next month.