Clint Eastwood: Trump is Taking on The "Pussy Generation" | Main | Overnight Open Thread (8-3-2016)
August 03, 2016

Digital Detox: Many Britons Unplugging Themselves From Internet In Order to Plug Into the Real World

Yes. This is good.

One third of Britons have undertaken a "digital detox" by ditching their smartphones and tablets to wean themselves off online addiction and to do more in the real world with friends and family, communications industries regulator Ofcom said.

Some 15 million adults had sought temporary respite from the internet, Ofcom said, as adults spent an average of 25 hours online each week, rising to 29 hours for those aged 16-24 and 26 hours for teens....

I've been taking a deliberate "Internet Sabbatical" at least one day a week since I read about it in Cal Newports's Deep Work: Finding Focus in an Increasingly Distracting World.

Plus, I mostly went off Twitter -- for a while. Until the Shrieky Freaks pulled me back in. But now I'm mostly off again, and will be going off more or less permanently again.

There was a South Park about marijuana. They had to walk a fine line -- these are libertarians who pride themselves on not bullshitting a party line, and yet, they were kind of uncomfortable with endorsing marijuana on a show that has a lot of appeal to kids (at least, young teenagers).

I though the way they handled it turned out to be pretty bang-on and not bullshitty. No, you won't become an addict on marijuana, nor will your life be destroyed (probably).

But marijuana makes being bored -- being inert -- seem like a reasonably good use of your time.

I think that would be my indictment of the internet. Does anyone really need to do a Wikipedia Walk-About and wind up reading about Captain Boomerang's origin story?

It's fine for a bored, my-brain-is-too-tired-to-engage-with-anything-heavy indulgence and diversion.

But indulgences ought to be enjoyed occasionally -- once a week, twice a week at most.

If it's habit -- well, any indulgence which is habituated is sort of, definitionally, a bad habit.

I'm trying to take my own advice. I learned French on my own (using a lot of online aids), but ultimately, to speak French, you have to (get this) actually speak French.

That means I had to stop just thinking about venturing out of the apartment and finding a french speaking bar-night, and actually find one.

Little by little, the vocab is moving to the active/verbal part of my brain.

I stopped thinking about doing it -- while remaining glued to the ghostworld of the internet -- and actually ventured out into the real physical world to talk with actual living beings.

I started walking, and would drive several miles to find a good park, preferably with ravines or other interesting features.

There's something wonderful about moving in the real physical earthly environment. It feels right and good in a way that dashing off a critical tweet, and bravely announcing "I'm putting you on my block list," does not.

I like crossing bridges. Wooden ones. Pedestrian ones. A small pleasure, but a real one.

I want to learn how to rock-climb. Well, I'm doing that this weekend.

Instead of wanting to do things, I'm trying to actually do them.

I feel better. I just feel more productive, more pro-active, and more engaged in actual breathing moving sweating life.

As Peter Gibbons observed: "We were not put on this earth to sit in cubicles and stare at screens all day."

I think Peter Gibbons was right. And I more understand why, at the end of Office Space, he was working construction.

No, it's not a prestige job. Yes, it's physically demanding.

But there's something deeply -- and, if you'll allow this from an agnostic/atheist pseudo-Deist -- and spiritually satisfying about interacting with real, living things, rather than ASCII phantasms.


digg this
posted by Ace at 07:42 PM

| Access Comments




Recent Comments
Tami[/i][/b][/s][/u]: "Well, plan to try again over the weekend. Gott ..."

bluebell: "Haha. Honestly I so love this blog. Been a lurker ..."

Groo: ""I also saw a weasel on my porch, he was a foot fr ..."

qdpsteve: "Atlantic Coast, sure. I talked politics at work ..."

child left behind: "155 Okay: the Mariners tweet was the funniest thin ..."

Marcus Forealius : "....cream cheese and good crap.. not sure what els ..."

bluebell: "In Vino, did I see that you recently got engaged? ..."

Mike Hammer: "I also saw a weasel on my porch, he was a foot fro ..."

qdpsteve: "red, that's *after* it goes bad ;-) ..."

Basement Cat: "[i]I see that the prairie dog is enjoying a Chatea ..."

Atlantic Coast: "Long story short: I was stupid and if I get fired, ..."

qdpsteve: "Splunge and Chi-Town, thanks :-) ..."

Recent Entries
Search


MuNuvians
Polls! Polls! Polls!
Frequently Asked Questions
The (Almost) Complete Paul Anka Integrity Kick
Top Top Tens
Greatest Hitjobs

The Ace of Spades HQ Sex-for-Money Skankathon
A D&D Guide to the Democratic Candidates
Margaret Cho: Just Not Funny
More Margaret Cho Abuse
Margaret Cho: Still Not Funny
Iraqi Prisoner Claims He Was Raped... By Woman
Wonkette Announces "Morning Zoo" Format
John Kerry's "Plan" Causes Surrender of Moqtada al-Sadr's Militia
World Muslim Leaders Apologize for Nick Berg's Beheading
Michael Moore Goes on Lunchtime Manhattan Death-Spree
Milestone: Oliver Willis Posts 400th "Fake News Article" Referencing Britney Spears
Liberal Economists Rue a "New Decade of Greed"
Artificial Insouciance: Maureen Dowd's Word Processor Revolts Against Her Numbing Imbecility
Intelligence Officials Eye Blogs for Tips
They Done Found Us Out, Cletus: Intrepid Internet Detective Figures Out Our Master Plan
Shock: Josh Marshall Almost Mentions Sarin Discovery in Iraq
Leather-Clad Biker Freaks Terrorize Australian Town
When Clinton Was President, Torture Was Cool
What Wonkette Means When She Explains What Tina Brown Means
Wonkette's Stand-Up Act
Wankette HQ Gay-Rumors Du Jour
Here's What's Bugging Me: Goose and Slider
My Own Micah Wright Style Confession of Dishonesty
Outraged "Conservatives" React to the FMA
An On-Line Impression of Dennis Miller Having Sex with a Kodiak Bear
The Story the Rightwing Media Refuses to Report!
Our Lunch with David "Glengarry Glen Ross" Mamet
The House of Love: Paul Krugman
A Michael Moore Mystery (TM)
The Dowd-O-Matic!
Liberal Consistency and Other Myths
Kepler's Laws of Liberal Media Bias
John Kerry-- The Splunge! Candidate
"Divisive" Politics & "Attacks on Patriotism" (very long)
The Donkey ("The Raven" parody)
News/Chat
Archives
Powered by
Movable Type 2.64