everything must be captured.

It could simply be that I’ve just finished reading “The Circle” by Dave Eggers, but the new Apple holiday ad strikes me as illustrating an important question: How much is “enough”?

I know it may come across as “bah, humbug”, because everyone seems to love this ad.

But I’m not a huge fan.

Many years ago, we’d have been happy to have one still-shot picture that reminded us of an entire day, perhaps even an entire trip.  Then digital cameras hit, and we have unlimited shots.  Then video became easier to fit on small storage, so we need to get lots of videos, etc.  Now most of our cell phones have the capability to do what complex digital cameras did years ago.

So the above ad illustrates what they hope will be a positive message.  “Don’t misinterpret that young man in the corner using his cell phone most of the trip, because he may actually be using it to put together a warm, heart-felt family collage that will touch your heart.”  Riiiiiight.  Even if the teens hiding in technology corners this holiday season have these things in mind……my question is, “Is it worth it?”

Many of us have attended “Holiday” events already this season, where we sit back to take in the show, only to have several tiny screens pop-up in front of us – as eager parents (myself included) try to capture some images/video of the precious moment.  The same goes for every event that happens throughout our days.  I think I’ve posted on this before, but it deserves to be thought of, as many of us head into precious family hours together.

Sure, snap some pictures.  Snap some video.  But don’t elevate capturing the moment for later to become more important than being 100% present in experiencing the moment right now.  Create more memories, and less photo-books.  Our Grandparents seem like far less anxious people for a reason – it’s not just because they’re old.  It’s because most of them grew up knowing how to be completely present in the moment.  Not able to capture every sight and sound, they were content to actually breathe slow and deep these moments of being together….or alone.

Not to romanticize being “technology-less”…the video of family the boy makes is pretty great, and will be meaningful for the family as the years pass.  But let’s notice what he sacrifices to make that video too.  May our children know we value experiencing moments with them, more than capturing those moments for later…

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2 responses to this post.

  1. Maybe it’s because I also just finished reading “The Circle” too . . . but I happen to agree with you! I’ll admit, I was quite touched when I first saw this video. It surprised me which, I guess, was the idea. But you’re spot on when you ask us to consider what the boy sacrificed to make the video.

    A few days ago there was a viral video going around that depicted a flash mob in a grocery store to honor Nelson Mandela. It was a special moment and the people that were there were treated to a heart-warming tribute. But I was saddened when I saw the video of the customers . . . all of them holding their phones in front of their faces to capture the moment. It’s as if we can no longer experience something great unless we do so through the lense of our iPhones.

    Reply

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