fingernails and technology
When I played violin, we used to laugh at the fingernail girls. They had long nails on every finger that needn’t touch fingerpad to wood: the left thumb, the right index, middle and ring fingers. Their other nails were neatly trimmed, for these girls were often diligent violinists and acutely aware of the need to adjust the body to the instrument. The callouses under their chins were as red as ours but still we laughed, and cut all our nails to the quick.
It’s been years since I’ve trimmed my nails to interface with technology, but just a minute’s texting on my new Z600 has me cutting my modest thumb nails. The lumpy, rubber keys on my old phone were far more forgiving than the sleek flatness of the Z600. It looks better, though, and does more. And I like short, practical nails.
I wonder whether bodies are marked by our computers as they are by instruments. My fingertips are no longer leathery, my throat has lost the aching red mark worn by the violin pushed so often against it in the past, but the memories are there, and I pick my violin up as naturally as I ride a bike or touchtype. And I trim my thumbnails.