The trouble begins every time we turn on the news or manically scan the latest online gimmick, curated by robot, based on our particular tastes, stylistic choices and the plethora of brands associated with our cultural ADD.
Collective ADD (metaphorically-speaking because someone removed it as a medical condition) involves clicking on multiple sites within seconds, because we need to know if the world blew up overnight, so we check.
We get sucked into oncoming traffic on the information superhighway. The tag lines are ready and waiting to exploit our most primal emotions.
1) the headline scares you (Chipolte to offer Super Bowl tailgate spreads: friends and family e-coli special! Zika-it’s coming for you!)
2) a convincing promise of some secret knowledge, guaranteeing an “edge” over your competition (snake venom IS the fountain of youth, Dr. Oz found it in Buton, the true happiest place on earth GNH) so your life will finally get better;
3) the potential for helpful information, like tips on how to be more productive (actually doing your work instead of reading life hacks is never on the list); and life hack just sounds like a bonehead who is a “hack at living,” the hack writer of superficial information slathered in advertisements for snake oil;
4) the buzz feed, vice grip, pop culture happenings, the things your douchebag boss calls watercooler moments (you haven’t seen a live episode of SNL in I don’t know how long) – the things our society and culture apparently value: the vacuous and inane because they are unthreatening.
We click on these for those things we should know before we have to impress someone or hold our own, get a job or not get fired. We investigate a million meaningless threads looking for answers and we knew it all along.
In the quiet resides infinity