A stream of consciousness has enveloped me. Fearing that I’ll lose hold of it, I grab a pen and paper and begin to scribble down all that I can.

No, wait… I’ve actually grabbed my laptop. Confused, I pinch myself. Yep. I see a vanilla white screen open in Safari, and the past three seconds of my life flash before my eyes. Now I remember what happened: I clicked a mint-green button labeled “Write a story.”

I can sense that the white canvas in front of me wants to be splattered with words, but foolishly I’ve lost my train of thought. Frustrated, I pin the blame on the first thing I think of: my MacBook. The damn thing overwhelmed me with its elegant features. It invited me to run my fingers along its beautifully lasered edges, to caress the letters across its body. It distracted me.

¿He perdido de vista la tradición? Have I lost all sight of tradition? I’ve seemingly forgotten about all the benefits of writing by hand, succumbing to the grasp of technology instead. Yes, the machine has taken another victim — me — and has stolen my two primitive tools, leaving 78 black plastic keys as a twisted consolation.

Brilliant poets and authors — the Platos, the Shakespeares — wielded reeds and quills, writing only as quickly as such powerful instruments allowed. Scrawl, dip, scrawl, dip. They carried the weight of the Scribe in their hands, daring to share its vast responsibility, albeit temporarily. They took their time, choosing their words carefully, and letting their thoughts simmer.

And me? Well, I have a slab of aluminum. The apple on its sleek metallic façade is an odd reincarnation of the Fruit that inspired yet another great mind — and it teases me, as the logo provides me not with vicarious creativity but rather with a reminder of my block. The pixels of its screen form a window through which I can see, quite literally, anything my heart desires. But I don’t want to see — I want to feel.

Taking a deep breath, I shut my laptop, yank open the wooden drawer at the bottom of my desk, and pull out a piece of yellowed notebook paper and a dark blue pen. It’s time to head outside.