going off the grid

I’m contemplating something that, just in the fact that I deem it worth contemplating, kinda makes me a douche.

I’m shooting from the hip here, kind of a stream of consciousness thing, so forgive me if this gets out of hand. (This implies other posts have some form of organization or plan, which is an outright lie.)

Anyone close to me could tell you that I tend to be discontent. Teresa laments over my desire for “things” all the time. This is partially because I dream out loud, without filter, so I’ll often come out of the blue with “I’ve been thinking about getting [ ].” Even if it’s obviously out of our financial reach. Even if I have no real intention of getting it. I find myself often thinking of things I want. Now, it’s said that those who are thankful for what they have, will not want what they don’t. It’s probably said more eloquently than that. Overall though, I think I’m pretty aware of that I live a pretty nice life. I have all my needs covered easily, and I even manage to balance a few expensive hobbies at the same time. So I don’t quite feel like I take for granted what I have, and thusly want more. But I may be forming a theory.

My mind is always thinking about speaking to you. Yes, you. The internet viewer. Whether it be tonybullard.com, or through status posts on Facebook, I’m constantly thinking about how I can talk to you. When I do things, I think about how I want to tell you about them. When I see things, I want to comment to you about them in some clever way. It’s not twitter narcissism, where I think you WANT to read about what I think about some guy on the train, it’s more like a screaming desire to socialize with people. Crap. I’ve talked about this before. Well, that time I didn’t go so deep into my psychosis of performing for you through text alerts.

I’ve become a little bothered by how much of my mental time is spent putting on a show for people I don’t ever see. So I’ve started to think about going dark for a little while. Yes, that’s right, I’ve done the most pathetic thing in the world, announcing my plans to ‘leave the internet.’

I spend almost my entire day on the internet. I wake up, sometimes check facebook before I shower, then get on the bus, where I listen to podcasts, check facebook and twitter. Then I get in to work and between tasks I’ll check RSS feeds and facebook, again. When I go to the bathroom, part of my routine is pulling out my phone, turning on my wifi and refreshing twitter, so I can read while I…um…sit.

It’s pretty easy to see it’s too much. I spend my whole day seeing other peoples’ idealized presentation of themselves (Is it just me or does it seem like everyone goes on awesome vacations?) and news of new things, and everyone’s link to cool things, etc. Perhaps I’ve been too good at designing all the input in my life. I’ve trimmed it down to all this great stuff, and it’s giving my own life a malaise in comparison.

So, to the point. The thing I’m contemplating. The sentence that will make most of you go, “yeah, so what. Get over yourself.” My plan is to swap out my smart phone with some old candy bar phone around the house, block Facebook in my browser, and generally avoid online interaction for a week. There it is.

I guess I’ll have to start reading books finally.

  • Nathan

    I think you’ll find yourself better for it in the end. I’ve done similar things, even taken a break from the Internet for Lent a once or twice. Especially with everything becoming available for smart phones, it’s so easy to be consumed with all of the trappings of the Internet that really just suck time away from you.

  • Page

    as long as its only a week…

  • Big Sis

    I feel you, and agree with the idea. I, too, have contemplated giving up Facebook, because it really does make me ignore my family, and they are so much more important. Good luck, bro, but as Page said, don’t disappear, because I like knowing what’s going on in your life!