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Synthetic Bile

June 7, 2017

It is difficult living in a post-reality world. I have been trying to keep my head down. I got on twitter a few times but I found it made me angry like a Fox News-watching dad. The only trouble is that your anger is recorded there on twitter for all time. The internet never forgets and never forgives. It is a manipulable bubble. Bubbles always pop. Every time. From soap bubbles to Tulipmania to the housing bubble, all bubbles burst.

This week, I have gone cold turkey. I’m not looking at twitter. I’m not reading the news. All I’ve been doing is watching my old DVD set of “Dawson’s Creek” and reading Terry Pratchett books. I can’t do it anymore. I can’t handle the constant deluge of “news”. I’m turning it off.

I don’t know if that means I’m giving up, but I have had my fill of ginned up outrage. I can’t handle all this synthetic bile. I want to be an optimist. I choose to be an optimist. I won’t let that be taken away from me by news orgs needing clicks and social media sites needing users. I’m swearing off my addiction to self-righteous anger. When you find yourself spending more than a few fractions of an hour searching for the perfect .gif of someone giving the finger you know it’s time to take a break. This isn’t who I am.

I am in internet rehab. I’m only checking email and this site. The rest of the time, the internet and all its 24-hour, second-by-millisecond examination of reality is dead to me. It’s like plugging yourself into the Borg hive mind. It is poison to your individuality. “Resistance to The Resistance is futile.”

I’m going to spend my life living life. I wonder how many times that has been written on the internet and in private journals through history. I won’t be the first one to fail. I’m sure I will fail at some point. At some lazy moment, I will look into my phone and my anger will best me and I will reply. I will raise my digital voice. I will scream into the cacophony of nothingness that is the internet: everything and nothing at all.

Life is a struggle to do better. That is the one thing I know.

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