Giving Digital Thanks This Season

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving! A holiday wherein we sit back in our most comfortable leather chair, watch football while discussing the merits of the nickel defense (even though most of us have no idea what the nickel refers to), gorge ourselves on turkey, chips and dip, and give thanks for all the wonderful things we have in our everyday lives. It's a moment which is purely American, one we've all come to long for over the years. Since you're probably half in the office and half out today, at least mentally, I thought I'd take this episode of the Spin to share with each of you what I am most thankful for this year, at least from an online perspective.

First of all I am thankful for e-mail. E-mail allows me to fill those hours of the day where I previously would have been bored and would have had to search near and far to find something to do at work! How could I possibly fill the four to five hours each day that I currently spend solely responding to e-mail? I simply cannot fathom what the working class did before e-mail. How did our parents come close to filling 10 hours a day (or more) with work? Where did all that "productivity" come from? Without e-mail, I might have to actually sit and think and interact with other people! There's just no place for that at work... this is work after all, not a hobby (or is it)!



Secondly I am thankful for ATMs and online banking. Imagine the days when you had to actually GO to the bank and interact with a human being! Ha! You had to take out money once a week that would cover you all week. You had to lick stamps to pay bills. You had to actually wait for the bills to come in the mail. You probably had to sit down once a month, with a pen, a notepad, and your receipts and balance your budget to know where your money was. Nowadays I can log onto a Web site, send out a couple bills and pay everyone off before they possibly have the chance to send out a statement. Of course, responding and staying on top of my e-mail sometimes cuts into my online banking time, but that's a sacrifice I have to make, and I'm willing to do it! Besides, without e-mail I would never know that someone may have used my PayPal account and that they need me to e-mail my name, social security number and account balance to them so they can locate the miscreant and certify my account. E-mail once again saves the day--and online banking makes it safer!

I am also thankful for faster bandwidth. Faster bandwidth means more access to video online. It means if I miss an episode of "Heroes," I can now watch it online! I can download my music at the drop of a hat. I can watch videos submitted by users about surfing and skating. I can even watch live Pearl Jam videos till my eyes bleed (which I've come very close to doing). With faster bandwidth comes the rise of the video revolution--and I am a card-carrying member of that movement.

Which brings me to my final thanks of the year; I want to say "thank you" for blogs. Now that blogs are proliferating all over the Web, I can finally stay on top of all the happenings in politics and celebrity. Not only will I know when George Bush or John Kerry say something stupid, I'll know when Paris Hilton says something stupid as well (please--no comments on the frequency with which these events seem to occur). I can always refer to "The Google" to find a blog that keeps me informed. I can surf The Superficial to see which celebrity did something dumb. I feel I am one with the cultural mainstream, all because of these timely and relevant blogs!

I'm sure there are millions of other reasons to be thankful this year; however I know that reading a long laundry list of them is not tops on your list today as you prepare for travel. But thank you for reading the Spin all year long, and best wishes to each of you and yours this holiday season.


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