While waiting for my phone to back up, I started thinking about the things that connect me to it.
I have a really bad memory. For that reason and others, you could say I’m a collector. I collect notes I wrote or received, boarding passes, wine corks, random things from places I visited. It’s my way of going back to those moments, from time to time, and relive them all over again.
But the things I collect are just one part of my life. How about those 3 AM Whatsapp messages in which I poured my heart out? How about the silly selfies from somebody that’s not part of my life anymore? And how about the songs on my Facebook timeline that, at some point, described my feelings perfectly?
Well, they’re all safely backed up on two different clouds. Besides that, they’re always a few clicks or touches away. So technically, they’re so much safer than my physical collections. However, they seem so… out of reach.
Technology allows us to instantly capture moments, to instantly communicate with anyone, and when I try to grasp the awesomeness of this fact, I know for sure I wouldn’t trade it for anything. But if there’s one thing I don’t like about technology, it’s that somehow, it strips me from my memories and boosts my forgetfulness. With its enormous storing abilities, it encourages us to systematically organize our memories into folders, platforms, etc. For me, this isn’t even comparably as appealing as going though a box of photographs — the randomness and the mix of feelings it awakens can’t be replaced by looking into a folder which I consciously choose, in chronological order, from a specific event.
Yes, I can find out in an instant exactly what songs described my life in March 2010, or how the people in Amsterdam dressed like, but it doesn’t evoke half the memories a torn concert ticket (found by accident in a pocket) does.
Turning my virtual memories into physical ones? There’s no app for that.