Boredom vs Creativity and World of War Craft Recently, I heard a piece on NPR about boredom, it’s good for us. According to Jim Sollisch boredom leads to creativity. Ok, I’ll buy into that. When we are bored, we dream and doodle, we are creative. I thought that was pretty interesting, so I dug a little deeper. and found a piece by Dee Kumar Boredom is Good for Creativity, Why the IPad, Internet and TV Helped ruin Creativity.
Apparently, today’s families never really disconnect and get bored… When we are bored we find something to distract us, we check our facebook or e-mail, we text a friend, turn on the TV, anything to avoid being bored. Creativity is dying and my kid’s brains are turning to goo because they rarely whine those infamous words,” I’m soooo bored.”
You can see where this is going.
I thought about this problem all day and decided my family should unplug for just thirty minutes a day, we need to eat more green leafy vegetables and be bored at least once a day. I wondered, if their goo filled heads would explode, would their fingers continue to tap and twitch as though texting an invisible friend? Probably texting “my mom suxs”” And I’m embarrassed to admit this but what really concerned me was what time we would turn everything off. And what show would we miss? Dancing with the Stars? Billy the Exterminator or Glee. Pathetic, right? I figured we would have to do it early in the evening, right after the news. There’s nothing on worth watching good then.
When I made my proclamation the reaction really wasn’t that bad. Lex,who is the consummate facebooking/texting thirteen year old, kind of shrugged and said ok, then disappeared to read and practice her guitar. That was good because I actually haven’t heard her play in about six months. Creativity lives on!
Alex, my husband found a book, stretched out to read, but he promptly fell asleep. Sandor the seven years old had the biggest problem even though he plays alone in his room all the time. But when ordered to “play” he was lost. Finally he found a knock knock book and an elephant puppet. Ever three minutes he came into the kitchen to let the elephant perform.
I’ll Ask Ya one more time to open this door.
After a few minutes of that, he ended up under the kitchen table with the puppy in a staring contest. The puppy started licking himself and Sandor won the battle.
Finally Sandor asked if he could play with Lexie. He told her the knock knock jokes then they made up mean names to call each other, just for fun, like “chicken baby cheese cake”, “freaky frog face” and “puppy breath” That’s pretty creative. Ok, basically, they did what they always do.
And me? Well, apparently I have problems because the kids are laughing, Alex is snoring and here I sit, in the bathroom with my laptop wondering, what time Biggest Looser comes on tonight.
Then I started wondering is creativity really on it’s death bed? There still seems to be plenty of music, movies art work and books in the world. But I do worry a whole lot about the kids who spend hours every day playing video and computer games. It seems almost obscene and I question their parents parenting skills but the truth I’ve known a lot of kids who played hours and hours and hours of video/computer games (especially World of War Craft and Halo) and most have turned out just great. They are smart, athletic and social. (I actually hate admitting this) I’m not alone in my concern.
Yesterday Sandor put a pair of his boxers on our dog. He even made the dog’s tail stick out the fly, and Lexie covered her door with duct tape and patches of demin. I don’t know what other kids do when they are bored but I think we might be ok for now.