Thursday 23 April, 2020 | Day 32 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR | f/4.5 | ISO 6400

Isolation Photo Project, Day 32

My kids are becoming increasingly frustrated by the quality of their “online” college/university education. The “designed for in-person classroom” courses were rapidly and haphazardly moved to a badly managed mostly “Zoom” format that doesn’t seem to add much value. I expect that professors are equally frustrated having no control over the chosen technologies and just a few weeks of training to get their syllabus adjusted. Considering how much a college education cost, I think most students are being royally screwed and maybe ill-prepared for success if the current course is a pre-requisite for another course.

My daughter just ranted on about how she can’t even raise her hand or interrupt to ask the professor a question and most discussion is just people just talking over each other or apologising for background noises. Considering how much college cost in the USA, these schools are not getting value from this.

For the 35 years I have practised as a psychotherapist, I have discouraged people from seeing themselves as hapless victims of forces arrayed against them. That’s the whole premise – that whatever brought you to my office, it is hampering your ability to direct the course of your own life. So let’s name your pain and then do something about it. Tell off the boss, walk out on the husband, confront the perpetrator, whatever it takes, and then move on, become the agent of your existence.

It’s a profession that has been good to me, and I hope good for my patients. But what if the premise is undone by circumstance? What if it turns out that we are hapless victims of a force arrayed against us, that will mercilessly hijack the machinery of our lives, that is silent and invisible and leaves us with nothing to do but cower in our homes and wash our hands and hope that it will pass us by? Is there a role for therapy in a pandemic?

Gary Greenberg writing in the Guardian

My website performance has been “off” for a few months. I was not sure of the cause but I saw a lot of malicious traffic from a range of IPs in Lithuania and malicious traffic coming from IP ranges that identify as “Huawei Cloud”. I’ve updated my .htaccess file accordingly.

Check out this vlog post from well-known photographer Trey Ratcliff. I’m struggling with isolation but I can’t imagine how Trey is dealing with isolation in isolation. He’s living alone.

Tonight I attended a virtual photo critique session hosted by the Princeton Photo Group. The audio was muffled with participants talking over each other and less than ideal video quality that made the photos look terrible. The experience was terrible.

Zoom sessions are not a replacement for an in-person-in-the-same-room experience. Why the heck do we keep pretending that it is? It is not! Is it the best we can do under the circumstances we are all living under? Yes. But please, please stop pretending that “Wow. We’re all connected”. I don’t feel connected. I am annoyed.

A close friend; her mother died this week. COVID-19. I can’t keep feeling like this.

Submitted as part of the 100DaysToOffload project.

2 comments

  1. One of the other things a psychotherapist can do is help you accept and tolerate a situation you can’t control or change. The time we live in now is extremely distressing, and frankly all we can do is learn to tolerate that distress.

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