A Sideways Glare at Contemporary Society
I have a friend who is cyber-blind. He doesn’t have a computer; he doesn’t have a tablet; he doesn’t have a cell phone. In fact, he barely has cable TV (and no PVR!) But he isn’t one of those pompous asses who’s constantly reminding the world that he lives on a higher plane of consciousness because he’s transcended technology. No, he’s just a regular guy. And as he tells it, “I missed the beginning of the digital revolution, and now the learning curve is too steep for me to catch up.” He’s perfectly content, BTW, but the obvious question is: how does he function, on a daily basis, in a world that can’t go to the toilet without tweeting the results?
Here are just a few things my friend is missing:
1,612 Instagram Photos of Food — One of the requirements of an Instagram account is that you must eat at least 9 meals a day. And I’m certain nobody under 30 knows what hot food tastes like because, by the time they’ve produced the photographic evidence, it’s cold.
16,120 Useless Email Messages — Aside from being cursed at birth, there is no earthly reason why my email account overflows every couple of days and I have to spend at least a half an hour, cleaning up the crap. Who the hell even uses email anymore?
161,204 YouTube Videos — You start off, in the early evening, clicking on a 3-minute video about how to stuff a Cornish Hen and end up — somewhere south of midnight — watching “Best Of Drunk Girl Fails 2014,” posted by a Ukrainian named Nemski. Don’t deny it! You’ve done it, too!
1,612,047 Facebook Homilies — What is it about Facebook that attracts idiot clichés? Facebook could be one of the greatest forums for intelligent discussion in history, but what do we get? Cute kitten memes that tell us to “Value your friends, cuz true friendship is purrfect!”
16,120,479 Twitter Trolls — I don’t care how you slice the pie, Twitter is Lord of the Flies with Wifi! It’s as if Jack the Ripper’s evil twin built a digital playground for all his nasty little friends and then turned them loose on the world.
But the very worst thing in the digital universe is:
161 Passwords — Every time you turn around in cyberspace, you need a new password. I’m absolutely convinced that Websites demand that these weirdo afflictions have at least 8 characters, 2 prime numbers, 1 capital, 1 lower case, 3 symbols, an emoji, a hieroglyphic, a quadratic equation, a Greek letter, a Cyrillic letter and the first three letters of your great-aunt’s maiden name because they want to see just how obedient we are to our computer overlords!