Sometimes Mondays.

… feel like a day for settling in … to new rhythms. colder weather (thankfully yesterday’s snow was just enough to be fun and the roads were pretty dry this morning). and maybe … finally?! getting to the bottom of the to-do list I’ve been working on since before Christmas!

I read this in the Times this morning (from Gail Collins and Bret Stephens’ weekly column The Conversation, these are Bret’s words)

Social media has created the phenomenon of Together Alone … Only it’s the wrong kind of togetherness and the wrong kind of aloneness … The old togetherness taught people how to negotiate differences in communities they hadn’t chosen for themselves. And the old aloneness often entailed long periods of engaged solitude, like reading a novel or gardening or building a model ship. But the new togetherness allows us to select the communities to which we belong, mostly with people who like what we like, hate what we hate, and never challenge our assumptions. And the new aloneness often means scrolling among endless internet distractions without ever focusing on anything in particular. The result is that we now live in a world where people know neither how to be together nor how to be alone. It’s the ultimate recipe for unhappiness and bad behavior.

I certainly feel like my Together time has become a lot of what Bret describes. My Alone time, however, is still very much engaged solitude (I love that phrase). and I’m looking forward to settling in to a good bit of that, too!

I’m also reminded that today, when we honor the memory of Martin Luther King, Jr. is one that needs that “old” kind of Together Alone. community action based in love and hope.

What are you settling into this week?

from this morning’s walk

20 thoughts on “Sometimes Mondays.

  1. I spent a good part of my day connecting with people, on the telephone if you can believe that. No screens, no zoom, just plain old talking and catching up. I am also working on paying attention to where I can shift and move into new spaces. I feel hopeful and I love that flower! It reminds me that I need a bit more pink in my life.

  2. That is an interesting point of view from the Times and one that is very true in many cases. I’m settling into gardening this week, and my book too.

    1. Seems like many of us relate to the Stephens’ view of community today and solitude before. I guess that’s not surprising for a group of folks who connected over the internet about knitting and reading?!

  3. That is an interesting thought and one that is so true. I’m settling into gardening this week. The weather is perfect here in Phoenix and it’s time to start working in the yard again. Bye the way, you see to have duplicate posts on WordPress Reader. Just in case you didn’t know 😊

  4. This quote hits home. I think the pandemic has exacerbated the effect, too. It’s one reason I’m very grateful for our Zooms and for the chance to connect with others via blogs.

  5. “Engaged Solitude” – I LOVE that phrase. And I feel as though my “alone” time is engaging and thought provoking (at times). I’m good with my Together Time too – I don’t scroll very much and don’t belong to any on-line groups. I enjoy my blog and others and feel we connect that way.

    1. It feels like a group of folks who love to knit and read and met on-line through their blogs is very much into Engaged Solitude 🙂

  6. I’m settling into packing, combining, and purging! I’ve packed some of the MD house, moved some of the things to NJ, and started purging things from NJ. There is still lots more to do, so luckily my time for screens and scrolling is limited.

  7. That’s a really thoughtful concept to consider. I think, like you, my Together Time is just as he described, and my Alone Time is just as you described.

  8. I am nodding to that quote, and am insanely happy that “doom scrolling” is not a thing I do, ever. And yes (!!) to engaged solitude!

    The one thing this pandemic living has reinforced to me is that life is fleeting and fragile so be an active participant in life!

    (and I think I like the blog changes… very nice!)

    1. I think engaged solitude speaks loud and clear to those of us who like to knit and read 🙂 (and thank you – I’m really enjoying the new space … now that it’s all setup!)

  9. This perspective is so true. I’ve had discussions with people and how dating has changed- boy. Once I’m given permission to “run” again and the weather improves I’m looking forward to alone and together rides. Right now I’d love to see empty knitting needles, everything seems so slow going.

    1. I know you miss those rides! I’m getting close to finishing a sweater and think I might take a short break and knit a few accessories … and finish some socks.

  10. That’s such a thoughtful reflection you share from the Times; I read it out to Himself and he nodded in agreement. The periods of lockdown and social restrictions these last two years have not fostered opportunities for being part of the wider community and seeking ‘togetherness ‘activities which enlarge, rather than narrow, one’s horizons … But I am encouraged that the press also reports that a number of people seem to have found a nourishing aloneness in new interests and hobbies.

    1. I’m encouraged that some folks have discovered a nourishing aloneness … I fear that many have found a bottomless pit of mindless scrolling. I guess there was the breadmaking and I’m pretty sure knitting and sewing found new fans. I feel like my community is mostly made up of folks who love that engaged solitude and peek out occasionally to connect with each other 🙂

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