Being Here, Not There

Now that graduate studies are done (at least for the M.A.), it’s time to return to the blog. It’s been a while. A lot has happened. I have changed and remained the same – as knowing, being, and relating eternally require.

Notable at this juncture of return to the web log is the decision I made this week to exit Facebook. I have preferred keeping entries to less than 500 words so far, and that means not explaining at length all the reasons for dropping the addictive social media platform, but a couple of decent articles here and here begin to give you the idea. You’ll probably find a bit of yourself, if reluctant to admit, in how the authors express their own experiences. Add to those enumerated reasons such as time, money, and privacy, the poor judgment around live-streaming suicides, rapes, torture, and murder, the illegitimate authority to censor what it deems fake news, and a plan to promote the unreal (Zuckerberg calls it augmented reality) in Facebook ‘spaces’ where we interact with our ‘friends’ and family as avatars in a stew of design and media elements, so I reached my own personal tipping point. It’s been two days and I feel great – liberated – and happily confess that FOMO has not but vaguely (if I am honest) tempted me. As soon as I re-exercise the flabby social muscles of real phone calls, handwritten mail (or even regular e-mail), and in-person time with my true friends and family, I expect the Facebook reflex to be dissolved entirely.

There really is something to be said for missing out – for not knowing, for not relating all the time, for just being in one’s own face for a while – being here, not there. The most relevant news feed is always present, with or without a digital network.

In the freed time re-claimed, I’ll be considering the content direction for the blog. It is likely that it will be an eclectic blend of cultural criticism — which is broad enough to let me generalize at this point — and will usually be transparently spun through the personal lens I use to know, be, and relate.

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