Blog by Sumana Harihareswara, Changeset founder
The Touch of a Vanished Hand
Hi, reader. I wrote this in 2011 and it's now more than five years old. So it may be very out of date; the world, and I, have changed a lot since I wrote it! I'm keeping this up for historical archive purposes, but the me of today may 100% disagree with what I said then. I rarely edit posts after publishing them, but if I do, I usually leave a note in italics to mark the edit and the reason. If this post is particularly offensive or breaches someone's privacy, please contact me.
Before going to Wikimania, I printed out a bunch of stuff: my registration confirmation email, an FAQ about the conference, a list of other colleagues who were attending, my flight itinerary, and so on. I used a binder clip to keep it together. The last time I looked at it was probably Monday, a few days before I flew back to New York.
Just now, I unearthed it from my bag as I finished the last of my unpacking. I tried to flip through it, but something was wrong. Then I realized: when searching through my belongings at the Tel Aviv airport, Israeli personnel must have taken the clip off the papers, then put it back on the right. Probably because they're used to Hebrew texts, which one reads from right to left.
There must be some academic somewhere who can help me understand, cerebrally, why the narrative of surveillance feels so much like a ghost story. They both make me feel like prey.
23 Aug 2011, 13:04 p.m.