Day 30

What have I learned? This will be a question a lot of people will be asking me.  The answer is not so simple.  I don’t think I will know for weeks or months what all this meant and how it has changed me.  What I do know is that Josh and I have just scratched the surface with this project.  There are many more conversations to be had about how all of these new technologies affect us physically, emotionally, and socially.  In that regard, 30 days most definitely is not enough time.

However, it was enough time for me to realize that I can’t sustain all of the technologies the way I have been.  I will not be deleting my facebook account after this, but I will be using it much differently.  I have already taken the app off my phone and I will be cutting back the number of people I have as friends.  For me, the key is keeping a balance and remembering the importance of fostering my relationships face-to-face as much as possible.

What are you going to do when you get out?  This is the other question people want to know the answer to.  To start, I will be celebrating tonight with many of you.  I look forward to hugging my family and friends, but I am starting to wonder if all the noises, smells, and physical contact will put me into sensory overload.  It’s possible and that’s okay. It will still be fun.  After that I will be unplugging for a little while.

As I mentioned, I will be cutting back on my facebook friends, but I want to thank all of the supporters and everyone I have had conversations with this month.  It’s those discussions that made this project a success in my mind and I hope that you will continue the conversation with those in your lives.

12 Responses to “Day 30”

  1. Cornelia Seigneur Says:

    Hi Norine

    Congrats! you did it! I will not be able to make it to your celebration but thanks for the FB invite! …Here is a link to art critic at The Oregonian, who noted your project as well- keep in touch, Cornelia

    http://www.oregonlive.com/art/index.ssf/2010/11/to_be_alone_or_not_the_public.html

  2. JJElliott Says:

    Well D.(ic)K. Row is entitled to his opinions, but what has he done lately?

    But seriously folks, we want to thank everyone for your encouragement and support this month.
    Cristin will be ‘unfriending’ most of you–1,000′ friends’ is just too much for her to keep up with–but please become a fan of the PIProject on Facebook so we can keep you updated on the project.
    Remember, there’s a documentary to follow . . .

    http://www.facebook.com/publicisolationproject

  3. Kristen L. Says:

    I was very impressed by your faithfulness to this project, Cristin! It was intriguing to keep up with it this month. Way to keep strong in the tough times. I’m sure it was lonely even in the midst of all the communication going on. I’m so glad you’ve reached the end! It’s been a great reminder to me to live each day never taking face-to-face communication for granted. Good luck with the continuing of this project!

  4. Cliff Feightner Says:

    Cristin,
    Congratulations to (mostly) you but also to Josh. This was valuable experiment in The Social Fabric of our times. I am very happy that you are with those that you love; I only wish that I was with my Lynn! Happy Holidays

    Cliff

  5. Linda Campillo Says:

    Congratulations Cristin!
    Hope you are enjoying your celebration. I think what you have done with your project would be very difficult, and I also think you have created a plethora of conversations. It’s sad to think that people do exist with even less contact and communication on a daily basis than you had during your month in isolation. I look forward to hearing more and seeing the documentary.
    Thanks for your creativity.

  6. brad Says:

    Congratulations. Learning is a continual process, but you just completed an interesting phase. Good luck.

  7. Adam Says:

    Did you ever read E M Forsters, “The Machine Stops”? It reminds me a bit of your experience. I’d be interested if you see any parallels.

  8. Molly Says:

    Congrats on the project and looking forward to the documentary! Since you’ll be unplugging for a while, I thought you’d enjoy this article — http://the99percent.com/articles/6947/What-Happened-to-Downtime-The-Extinction-of-Deep-Thinking-Sacred-Space

  9. Dorothy Santos Says:

    Congratulations on completing the project! All the best!

  10. tessa bird Says:

    Cristin. Thank you again for the impact you made on my 2 boys and for opening my eyes to the huge importance of human contact and how it affects me daily. My boys father and wife will only communicate with me via email and texts and it is excruciating. I am a ‘vocally’ verbal and ‘touchy’ person so to only be allowed to communicate with their father under such limitations has proven futile. We must allow eachother and ourselves the beauty of voice inflection, facial expressions even the simplest sounds of a sign or laugh. None of this is carried out thru emails or texts and for me, my personal experience, its lead to a very devastating and painful struggle. Not only for me but for Ezra and Isaac. The progression of deterioration of a once productive co parenting situation to now a full on custody battle and is proof enough to me that our new electronic age may kill off many a sincere soul. Just today I had a chance to verbally and physically, in person, lay my hand on his and ask for a truce from new personal attacks that hurt me coming from a man I was with for 14 yrs and his wife who’s never engaged in a conversation with me. He agreed. He SAW and HEARD my sincerity, something that can never be established thru emails or texts. It has been the only way I can truly get thru to this man and remind him that there he has no enemy in me but only 2 boys needing now more than ever the love and support of their parents. I trust they won’t be reading and, yes, it is a cry for solidarity and it is what we, venturing into this new electronic age must never lose sight of, our human senses. Smell, touch, sound, sight! It is vital to our well being and even for some of us, our families stability. Thank you again. This topic wakes me every morning at 5 am and until my boys are here my four nights a week, doesn’t allow my feet to stand firmly on the ground or allow a decent nights sleep. I thank you for giving me a clearer view of how this isolation is affecting my/our lives. I was genuinely there in spirit and hope to soon be free as well. (Pls ignore typos or run on sentences as this was typed on a cell phone. Sincerely.) tessabird

  11. tessa bird Says:

    A little melodramatic but a serious concern and living breathing epidemic I’m wittnessing every day in my personal life. Godspeed.

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Cristin Norine and Joshua Jay Elliott