It was late at night and I sat in bed, bleary eyed and checking out a few text messages.
One lady, Rainie Liu, wrote, ”I’m excited to see you tomorrow at your workshop. I’m bringing a whole bunch of my friends.”
I replied via text, “Awesome Rainie! Can’t wait to see you and your posse.”
My cell phone has an “auto-correct” feature which I soon discovered doubles as a dirty old man. The phone changed the word “posse” to “pussy.” In other words, Rainie was about to read: “Awesome Rainie! Can’t wait to see you and your pussy.”
Shoot!!! I looked at the clock, 11:52pm. Was it too late to call her?
Ring, ring, ring…”Hello?” she answered sounding half-asleep.
“Rainie, hi! I’m so sorry to be calling this late. It’s David Romanelli the yoga chocolate guy.”
“Oh hey.” Long silence. Clearing her throat, Rainie said, “Y’know I’m married right?”
“Honey it’s my yoga teacher,” Rainie quickly told her grumpy husband next to her in bed.
I continued, “Listen Rainie I totally apologize. I just wanted to give you a heads up that I tried to thank you for bringing your pussy, I mean posse, and my cell phone wrote pussy when I meant to put posse.”
“What? Who in the world?!” the suddenly heated husband grunted, having overhead me say “pussy” to his wife in the middle of the night. “Rainie is this the freakin’ guy you were saying touches your thighs in down dog!?”
“No that’s another guy, this is the chocolate guy,” Rainie told her husband. “Honey relax, all these yoga guys are gay.”
Someone wrote me a fascinating email this week. He said, “[Technology] makes me feel like I should be more connected to people, but really, it’s only on a surface level. I gain more from one conversation with a friend than I do from chatting on facebook for hours. I gain more from one hike in the woods than I do from reading 300 articles on Digg.”
Ain’t that the truth! At the end of the day, technology creates “absence.” Absence of time, absence of sensation, absence of peace. Think about it. How often these days do you sense a general lack? Don’t you always feel like something is missing?
The antidote to absence is presence. It’s the feeling you have in a sweet savasana, or eating comfort food on a rainy Sunday, or putting on a fresh Spiritual Gangster t-shirt. Should one dare to untangle herself from life, she might realize presence is not a destination or a calculation but a very simple revelation. As “posse” is just a few letters from “pussy,” so is “presence” from “absence,” and “love” from “shove,” and “breathe” from “seethe.” Simple solutions to complex problems. So put down your phone, turn off your computer, lie on the ground, and touch your Rod, I mean your God.