Pearls Before Breakfast Analysis Essay

In life, there are thousands of things vying for people’s attention. With all of these distractions, many people miss out on art, music, and many other aspects of culture. Though they are vastly different, in Nicholas Carr’s “Is Google Making Us Stupid? ” and Gene Weingarten’s “Pearls before Breakfast”, the authors both address what we miss when we rush through life. “Pearls before Breakfast” is the story of Joshua Bell, a famous musician who assisted in a social experiment by the Washington Post. On a cold January morning, at the L’Enfant Plaza, he played classical pieces for nearly an hour.

During that time, 1097 people walked through the station. About 20 people gave him some money but walked on without listening, only 6 people stopped to listen to the music. He made $32. When he finished playing and silence took over, no one noticed, no one applauded, there was no recognition. No one knew that he was one of the best musicians in the world. He played one of the most intricate pieces ever written, with a violin worth $3. 5 million. In the story, it is evident that to properly associate beauty, viewing conditions must be optimal.

If you look at the Mona Lisa through a cloudy window, the painting would not be anywhere near as incredible. If one walks through there busy day, eyes unfocused and oblivious to their surroundings, it is likely the grandeur of the painting would be missed. Just as those who had headphones in their ears, or thought elsewhere as they rushed towards their destinations did not stop to listen to the music and appreciate the amazing talent before them. Likewise, in “Is Google Making Us Stupid? ” Carr notes that technology can impair our ability to notice the things around us.

In “Is Google Making Us Stupid? ” Carr speaks on how the internet can cause people to lose concentration, and limit there experiences. In his essay, he writes “once I was a scuba diver in the sea of words. Now I zip along the surface like a guy on a Jet Ski” (Nicholas Carr 227). Similarly, in “Pearls before Breakfast”, Weingarten notes that “the explosion in technology has perversely limited, not expanded, our exposure to new experiences. ” We live in a time when technology can be used to replicate reality, augment reality, and create virtual reality.

There are potentially suffocation, suppressing, and constraining impacts of some kinds of technology. Someone may waste countless hours, forfeit vocational and academic achievement because of digital distractions that have no lasting value. Google causes us to have fewer in person human interactions. The inflections in people’s tones, words and comments can’t be fully comprehended on a screen verses in person. We rely of all our senses to understand the world around us. When we use less of our senses we understand less and miss more of the world that surrounds us. Both stories have a tunnel vision scenario.

They see what is in front of them and not what is around them. In both stories people are missing out amazing things in life. Viewing things virtually is not nearly as amazing as viewing them in person. You miss the smells, the touch, the feel of the place. Your many senses aren’t being utilized, therefore making you “stupid”. Seeing a rose on screen versus in a garden when you can feel the velvety petals, smell the fragrance and see its beauty and feel the peaceful serenity of the garden is a real, and not a virtual experience. -Transition We program our own playlists.

In doing so we might miss out on newly released songs or discovering we might like a style of music we hadn’t been exposed to before. Just as we program our own playlists, we program our lives. Our deliberately programed lives might keep us from our own unexplored experiences. We have to work at certain times, and we have places to be and things to do. This can cause people to be too busy to notice beauty. People need to stop and smell the roses. When we live such frantic lives, we can end up moving from one thing to the next without really concentrating on anything in particular.

We can hit the fast-forward button on life and not stop until the end, which isn’t much of a life at all. In Pearls Before Breakfast we read WRITE QUOTE FROM PG. 1044. Similarly Carr Notes “people eat work sleep rise we stopped listening to our senses and started obeying the clock? Elaborate – Transition One sharp contrast between the articles is that one was a cumulation of thoughts and data, and the other one was an actual experiment. One gives more of an opinion, the other gives you facts based on the experiment. PG 1054 Contrast Time constraint vs mind change (emphasis of book)?

Quote Pg 1049 Compare Kids stopping to hear the music compare to malleable minds As the internet becomes our primary source of information, it begins to affect our ability to read books and long pieces, flattening our brain’s learning experiences. In is google making us stupid? We read: I’m not thinking the way I used too. I can feel it most strongly when I’m reading. Immersing myself in a book or a lengthy article used to be easy. Now my concentration often starts to drift after two or three pages. I get fidgety, lose the thread, begin looking for something else to do.

Soon after writing this, he refers to a 5-year study in the UK, which found that people visiting their sites “exhibited ‘a form of skimming activity,’ hopping from one source to another and rarely returning to any source they’d already visited. ” Carr admits that we, as a culture, read a lot more because of the Web, but laments that “our ability to interpret text, to make the rich mental connections that form when we read deeply and without distraction, remains largely disengaged. ” another claim carr makes: the way we read on the internet is changing the way we think and making us less contemplative.

-Elaborate with echnology, people can accomplish great things in a short period of time, or they can get caught up in endless loops of triviality that waste time with the click of a button, people access whatever they desire -Conclusion “What is this life if, full of care, we have not time to stand and stare… No time to see, in broad daylight streams full of stars, like skies at night. Not time to turn at beauty’s glance and watch her feet, how they can dance. No time to wait till her mouth can enrich the smile her eyes began. A poor life this is when full of care we have not time to stop and stare” (W. H. Davies)