I’ve reflected a lot since last Tuesday. One of my personal revelations is that I need to stop being silent and start standing up for peace and love and understanding. But today, I’m going to talk about techie gadgets. Baby steps.

Digression

Well, first I want to say that posting an unrelated and seemingly frivolous post feels weird and small this week. But it’s related in a selfish way.

See, I’m self-conscious about how clumsy I communicate. When I try to talk about big things, the sentences I string together aren’t what I’m going after. The thoughts come out piecemeal. It’s too melodramatic. It’s full of jargon. It sounds like I’m out of touch no matter what I’m talking about. It’s so full of footnotes I can’t get my message across. Or I change my mind as soon as it’s out of my mouth.

And so when I have something big to say, I tend to keep quiet.

I realized that it didn’t have to be this way. So I’m working on it. One way is posting on this blog. Another is processing the big things through journaling.

Now then. My Bluetooth keyboard. Blog posts and journaling. In my world, it’s relevant.

Journaling

Journaling is the very best. I totally recommend it to everyone.

Digital scribbles

I prefer writing with a keyboard to writing with a pen. Because I chose to tie my journaling to digital devices, it was easier to start reading articles than it was to scribble down notes. I could be reading an article within seconds of picking up my phone. But writing down my thoughts meant being hunched over my old laptop, clearing notifications, and waiting for Emacs to start while my laptop preferred to use up the CPU syncing photos and checking for updates.

The Blue Bluetooth keyboard

Then I bought a Bluetooth keyboard that could pair with my phone. It’s blue with circular keys. It’s full size, but compact enough so it can fit in my purse. It’s rigid, so I can set it on my lap and it supports itself.

My usage goes like this: I connect the keyboard to my phone, open my favorite journaling app, and put the phone aside. I put the keyboard on the table, or, if I’m sitting on the ground or on public transportation, my knees.

Then I start typing. I don’t look at the screen, except to occasionally check that no journal catastrophe has happened, like a surprise lock screen or the cursor jumping.

I know using a keyboard without a screen looks weird. Though at first, questioning the conventions of smartphone usage was thrilling on its own.

Something unexpected was that the keyboard-phone set up liberates my eyes. I don’t need to look at the keyboard or the screen. I can stare out into the distance. Or describe what I see while I’m looking at it. I can even turn off the lights and start to drift to sleep, while still transcribing my stream of consciousness.

One year next Sunday

I’ve used the little blue Bluetooth keyboard for about a year now. It’s been a trusty companion through many reflections, like about how much better I could be at communicating, or about what I was going to do about last week.

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