The Three-Day Trial

“I’ll try to take a three-day break from Twitter,” I wrote on Twitter on Friday morning around 7 am. I meant it. I had a horrible day on social media on Thursday that made me question the point of human civilisation if that’s what we end up as — spiteful, tunnel-visioned internet trolls. Anyway, since I can’t waste time on social media, I’ll blogging about it. Cunning, right? So.

Day 1

9 am

This is actually pretty great. I can go without Twitter and Facebook for days. No urge to peek in at all. What an interesting story I’m writing.

10:30 am

OK, so I have a slight itch to check Twitter and Facebook but I can easily ignore it. Good thing the day is not as slow newswise as it was for most of this week. I wonder what people are tweeting about. No.

11 am

Facebook’s probably full of Easter wishes and eggs, and crap like that. I’m so not going to see if that’s true. What I’m doing may be boring but at least it’s not giving me a headache.

11:35 am

Haha, Cat said something funny and inspiring, I should… No.

Noon

Okay, I can take a break from work now and watch the Season 2 finale of The Walking Dead for the fifth time. Good times. Used to be a good show. Eat it Twitter and Facebook. Not coming.

1 pm

“We’re all infected.” What a line. Now what? Oh, work. Yay! Work!

1:22 pm

Just a quick peek at Twitter… NO.

1:31 pm

No.

2 pm

I started making bread and forgot to add the yeast. Made a mess, was forced to knead the dough by hand. Not giving up.

4:27 pm

Bread looks good. I can now say with certainty I know the secret to great big soft bread. It’s called acid. Not the drug. Acid. A tablespoon of vinegar in this case. Social networks? What’s that?

4:33 pm

Huge news in oil. I’m done for the day so I don’t care. I will care on Monday. Would’ve been fun to… No.

Day 2

6:54 am

I have no time for social networks. I slept two hours more than usual, dreamt tonnes of weird stuff and now I have to commit what remains of it on paper, for my dream journal I use as story idea repository because I hate things going to waste, including dreams. Then I’ll do what I can with DFthough it’s past my prime writing time. I want to see what happens in the end and how it happens.

8 am

DF is going almost well and I found an interesting paper about mental illness incidence among doctors to read when I’m done with the writing session.

8:39 am

No. If I could quit smoking for several days I can certainly quit the social shitholes for three days. Yes.

9:09 am

Just found out the name of a great song from the Shrek The Third soundtrack. Apparently, it’s also in that superhero movie everyone’s talking about that’s not the latest Star Wars. A very popular song with soundtracks and it should be.

9:54 am

2,023 words. With distractions, I might add. I’m quite pleased with myself right now and not thinking about bragging on Twitter at all. Anyway, most people on Twitter are sleeping right now. Except Australians. And the Brits should be waking up. No.

11 am

The dead may outnumber the living on Facebook within 50 years. And one of these dead will be me. What a non-morbid thought. Yep. Hanging out in my news aggregator. The science section. Better than the alternatives.

3:40 pm

Easter bread, check. Egg coloring quality control, check. Also made lamb soup. TWD binge is going well and I’ve had a major epiphany regarding geopolitics from watching certain characters but I won’t go into this here or anywhere.

Another major epiphany I had was that Twitter follows are a currency. A twitterency. Me, I’m sticking to cash and similar interests and a sense of humour. That’s my gold standard, the same kind of funny. A great currency, if you think about it. I’ve no idea why I’m thinking about currencies at all. Who cares.

5:50 pm

Cat has advanced from How It’s Made to Mythbusters. I’m adding this to my list of parenting wins, not that  we put any effort into it. Do I need to let the social media world know about this win? No. Yes. NO. Over.

Day 3

8 am

Slept until 7, have superpuffy eyes but nobody can seem me and run off in terror. DF is nearing the end and, though I say so myself, it will be a kind of spectacular end. Before that, however, I’ve some brain tumour research on my hands and I am not enjoying it.

If you though research for books was invariably fun… it’s not. Especially when it includes the phrase pediatric cancer. But! Can’t be sloppy, got to do what I’ve got to do. Don’t have any mental capacity for Twitter or Facebook thoughts though I caught myself thinking in tweets/status updates last night.

8:97 am

Just saw the word emergently and not in some half-illiterate online thread. This just has to go on Twitter… but it won’t. Not today. I’m strong.

10:20 am

I made the best driving playlist ever. Seriously, it’s got everything and it’s all good. Which reminds me I was doing book soundtracks. See? There’s so much to do outside social media. Am I counting the hours? Of course not.

6 pm

This day went like a breeze. If quitting smoking was as easy as quitting social media life would be so much, well, healthier though not better.

I. Did. It. And it didn’t even hurt.

Moral of the story: I know I’m right in not wanting to have a smartphone because the temptation would be just too great and I already have enough addictions to worry about to add a digital one to them. I also know it’s healthy to take a break from social media once in a while. Perhaps not as healthy as staying completely off them like some people I know but still better than living there.

Yet there was one surprise in all this. My writing motivation yesterday was worse than what it was on Thursday. It could be temporary fatigue — it happens — but it could be the three-day lack of contact with fellow writers on Twitter. There, I said it, social networks may sometimes be good for you in a literal, productive way.

Here’s a song.

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