My sort of New Year’s resolution to myself was to write a blog everyday this year. My last blog was Saturday, it’s now Thursday. So I’ve already cocked that one up. The problem is time. There is never enough and consistently I find, with the internet, there is even less. There has never been quite so much to look at, read or listen to before and or at least feel like you should be. Some of it is great. I have absorbed so much news and reports on things and found out so much about the world thanks to Twitter posts or stumbling across things via Google. Though ultimately most of it does just make me miserable. Knowledge is power they say, though I find most of the things I learn about show how little power I, or the common person, have over anything. The plus side of this I suppose is that with great power becomes great responsibility and with very little power I can be as irresponsible as I like. Which is a sort of power in itself. And hence why I then end up feeling responsible for being irresponsible and ultimately spend most days just feeling a bit miserable about the world.
What then adds to this misery is the urgency with which escapism is demanded from us from this universal knowledge. I am a big fan of escapism. I love hiding in a good book or film, or as I am currently doing to avoid life, play computer games and completely lose track of the hours. Lego Marvel Superheroes is currently to blame and I have to tear myself away before I become convinced if I go round punching everyday objects that coins will fall out. These things are all fine. What I am not a fan of is the language used to tell me that ‘You must see these 576 pictures of a dog wearing a hat!’ Must I? Why? What exactly happens if I don’t? Can’t I just see one? Surely, if I see one, I’ll understand that a dog in a hat may be funny, though having seen one several times already I find it’s starting to get old. Why must I see this particular one?
’76 Essential Dance Moves That Go Wrong!’ ‘Infinite ways to prove you’re a procrastinator!’ ‘9 pictures of you wondering if there’s any point to life anymore that you need to see!’ None of these posts are ever essential, must see’s, or at all useful. They are, ultimately, just content, clogging up the information superhighway. Yet I look at them. All the time. Yesterday I thought about writing a blog and instead watched a 1 and a half minute version of the Prodigy’s Firestarter video without any music on it. Apparently it’s funnier like that. It’s not. And I spent the entire time thinking ‘but it’s a music video. It’s meant to be set to music’ before then sighing a lot, but still playing it till the end. It was only 1 and a half minutes so I could’ve written a blog afterwards but instead I felt so sapped of creativity I just skulked around a while before checking the internet until I decided to find out which Game Of Thrones character I was* most like and then I had to leave the house full of completely unnecessary knowledge.
Sure, it’s all a bit of fun, but for my own good I’d just like slightly less of it. Or to be labelled more honestly. Things such as ‘Lots of things you could look it if there really wasn’t anything else to look at ever, otherwise maybe just don’t worry about it.’ ’15 GIFS that we’d like you to look at if you have the time but don’t worry if you don’t as they really aren’t life changing.’ Or alternatively just surprise people with content that they actually do need to see. Fill it with lists of ways in which the NHS is being destroyed or human rights are being threatened or things that might actually inspire you to do something with your life.
I could of course, just not look at them. But then where on Earth would I get the sort of escapism from where I forget about the real ills of the world in order to get upset about irritating websites? Exactly.
* Jon Snow. In case you were wondering. I know. Obvious really.
I’m doing my first ever UK tour in 2014, starting end of January. All dates and most ticket links are up at my website: https://www.tiernandouieb.co.uk. Please spread the word and come along as if you’re not there, it’ll be rubbish. It’ll just be me in a room and if I can’t get 3G I’ll be really bored. The very funny Chris Coltrane is supporting me on some dates and the brilliant Keith Farnan is doing a double header with me on others.