Self-censorship (and the laptop starts falling apart)
I don’t know how many words I’ve typed on this laptop. The blog has 1632 posts alone. With an average of say, 300 words per post, allowing for much longer ones and just image-based ones, that means I’ve done around 489,000 words here. Then, I’ve got over 100,000+ on other projects and that’s before I count emails or anything else. I reckon this keyboard has done at least three quarters of a million words and counting.
All this self-expression has left its mark… The A key is still there, but the A has completely rubbed off. The E has only the top left hand corner angle remaining. The N is only a little behind the E in terms of wear and tear. The O has the bottom right quadrant missing; I find this especially poignant. The S resembles a small crescent moon with a tiny star underneath and the L is starting to be denuded, bottom up. The rest of the letters are holding up quite well. The touchpad mouse is a bit iffy, but the thing that gives me most cause for concern is the right hand hinge and casing of the screen. We lost a screw a while back, and now the whole edifice is slightly precarious. You could no longer rely on the laptop to be comfortable on a lap, except gingerly. Now, in its older age it prefers to be placed on a desk, propped up against something.
I don’t know how long it will hold out.
I am going to have to get a new laptop for the oldest daughter who starts secondary school next month. This one simply can’t be used by anyone other than me.
Everything I have ever written of any significance has been typed up on here. That’s why, this morning, I was able to come to the crashing realisation that I have self-censored more and more as time has gone on. I have so much audience in mind that I no longer write with any freedom. This is ridiculous, because writing is freedom. What in the world has gone wrong?
Whilst I think about that particular paradox, here’s a picture of some past their best hydrangeas I walked past yesterday. Like the rickety laptop, I wouldn’t change them for the world. Things are so much more interesting, meaningful even, as they slide out of their original pomp and glory.