Friday 9 September 2016

Unknown stuff

While sitting in a café recently, I took out my laptop to do a bit of editing and noticed they advertised Wi-Fi free - being in French this actually means, free Wi-Fi, or weefee, with the accent. I thought I might as well check an email or two and logged on.
The list of surrounding weefees was extraordinary - about thirty different 'types' from Orange to Chez Felix or wherever it was that I was sitting. How can you escape all this, if you want to? Difficult. There is a man who lives in a village near us who has apparently spent thousands on 'Bacofoiling' his entire house and himself such is his angst, or perhaps very real fear/reactions to this peculiar air-born, invisible . . . thing.


Being a bit of a luddite myself I can understand the worry over something that has crept into our world insidiously and taken over our waking, and sleeping hours.
I still regard Microwaves with a certain amount of suspicion, and all phones with what I regard as a healthy disregard. Phone = useful device with which to contact or be contacted by people in a situation where information needs to be relayed: 'help, I have driven into a ditch,'  'can you remember to get more cat food,' and more importantly things such as: 'my neighbour's house appears to be on fire.' Most other yakking, checking how many Likes one has or playing Discontented Slugs, or other latest App drivel seems, to me anyway, a tad alien. Hm!
Anyway. WiFi. Mark, being an occasional insomniac like myself, read a report somewhere recently that suggested turning off the device at night was likely to promote better sleep - possibly common sense, but good to be reminded of such things, just as people need to be reminded that perhaps sleeping with their phones under their pillows might not be a good plan (arg! Why would you do that?)
So we did, turn it off, and . . . yes it could be total placebo BUT, I do sleep better - deeper, longer and with even more bizarre dreams than usual (a good thing, I think). I used to wake up at the slightest sound: a dog's collar jingling downstairs, a cat prowling over gravel outside, now - nothing.
It was as if I had been on standby not really OFF; ready to receive information streaming from our small white box downstairs: celebrity hair, Donald Trump's latest verbal gifts to the world, recipes, junk emails from Uncle Amazon; people inviting you to invest in their money-laundering ideas, tweets, reminders, Waitrose wine (how the F did I get onto their list?) gadgets, maps, reports . . . and so on.
The brain needs sleep: big, wide, profound sleep to repair itself and the body, and anything that can be done to assist this is of huge value - just a tiny switch- click-off; maybe it doesn't have any real effect but if one's mind can perceive it as an aid to total night time obliteration - great!
I read this morning about a Dutch study on growing cress placed next to wireless routers. One set of plants in a room with no routers, and another placed between two routers - result, the cress close to the radiation didn't grow . . . mm.
Anyway, just for saving energy alone, everything should be turned off that is normally on standby, and all chargers removed from plugs even when connected to devices; it all adds up to higher bills, general electricity waste and more stuff bombarding our already sore brains.
Goodbye, off to put this onto shutdown, not sleep.

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