Boredom has become a fashionable subject. Henry Alford, in his New York Times (August 10) review of seven books about boredom, suggests that “the ‘boredom boom’ would seem to be a reaction to the short attention spans bred by our computers and smartphones.” Boredom is something we have lost to technology–something, we are told, we should strive to regain. Most authors these days aren’t seeing boredom as “the graveyard of your spirit” but as “a lull before the gorgeous storm.”
Put down your smartphone. The boredom that follows will foster creativity. Or at least that’s the thrust of Manoush Zomorodi’s Bored and Brilliant (St. Martin’s Press, 2017). The author, host of her own weekly radio show and podcast on WNYC, Note to Self, created the Bored and Brilliant Project. It was “a weeklong series of challenges designed to help people detach from their devices and jump-start their creativity.”
If you’re addicted to your gadgets, Zomorodi’s book might help you step back a bit. If, however, you want to understand how having free time can trigger your imagination, you’ll have to turn elsewhere. Similarly, if you want to understand what boredom is in all of its varied manifestations, you’ll need another guide.
Article by Brenda Jubin, Reading The Markets