Home > In the Media, Life in General, School Dazed, The Blotter > Endless Black Holes on the Intarwebs….

Endless Black Holes on the Intarwebs….

Time spent on the internet is even more nebulous than the hours that evaporate in the midst of a hectic work day. I’m sure many of of you have experienced that strange time warp of a crazy day in the office (restaurant, store, etc) where you’ve just walked in the door at 8.30, and the next chance you have to look at the clock, it’s noon. The almost universal response to this is “WTF happened to today?” (The nuances of this expression range from utter delight at the massive amounts of work you’ve gotten done, to gut-wrenching despair because all you’ve done is put out fires and you haven’t even STARTED your t0-do list. I won’t interject my commentary here, but let you idle in your preferred reaction for a moment or three.)

Done? Ok. Awesome, back to what we were talking about.

Way back in the day, one of my favorite ways to kill time (and oh my god did I slay that m-fer every time it stared at me and whined it was bored) was to while away the hours on a message board. It was an awesome time suck that took me away from reality and gave me a place to indulge in the conversations some of my “normal” friends just couldn’t get in to. (For you geeks out there, I challenge you to explain D&D in a way that doesn’t make you sound like you and the rest of your party are somewhat schizophrenic and crazy. For a bonus thrill, explain the mechanics without their eyes glazing over.  The “normals” don’t get it, and most aren’t willing to give it a try – but that’s a story for another blog post.) On this message board, I could play in the writing forum, game in PbP RPG’s, chat, flirt, banter, have (mostly) civil debates over controversial topics and compete creatively with Photoshop or in “house” competitions. It was fun, intellectually stimulating to varying degrees and it was an escape.

Since the board disbanded, I haven’t actively sought out a replacement time suck. I did get lost in Facebook for a while, but school has helped me cut back on and almost kill that addiction. It did, however, introduce Google Earth into the equation, which is another black hole. I have to use it for school, so when I pull it up, it’s for legitimate use. The Panoramio pictures are my undoing, though. Many a time, I’ve started in one hemisphere and after doing the research I was supposed to do, have found myself in another hemisphere 180 degrees from where I started simply because I followed the trail of captivating photos. It’s a problem I’m working on… But back to the “free time” addictions. When I do take time to peek in on Facebook to see what’s going down, inevitably, I run across posts from Pinterest. I am convinced that this is the newest incarnation of evil and for that reason, I refuse to even attempt to sign up for an account.

Lemme ‘splain.

This site allows you and the billions of other compulsive collectors to “pin” things to various boards so you can clutter up your digital space instead of your home space. Yay for going green! ….but knowing my habits, my head aches just considering having another place to collect things in exchange for hours and hours spent wandering and pinning.

There are a great many people who disagree, I’m sure. I can point to a half a dozen or more Facebook posts a week praising the miracle of Pinterest recipes, craft ideas or kid projects. There’s always someone pinning something visually intriguing or stimulating. Even my boss is forever whipping out her iPad to say “Look what I did last night/this weekend – I found it on Pinterest.” It’s a groovy place to be, and I get that. My problem is that I’d have a problem with it – I do, actually, and I don’t even HAVE an account. This weekend, for example, I popped in to Facebook to see what the rest of the world was doing while I was working, only to find a cool picture of a manicure someone had pinned to their board. Intrigued, I clicked on it for a closer look, only to find fifty other images…and then I realized that several were attributed to one particular blogger…and that blogger blogged a LOT about a particular boutique nail polish manufacturer….which lead to some intensive googling to track this elusive persona down various dead end paths which all lead to a Blogger account I couldn’t view….Q&A forums to find dealers, more information…trudging through eBay with my wallet well over my head and prohibitively sealed….digging to find a distributor who carried it, but only in small batches….discovering the dealer was out because the manufacturer was in such high demand that she was on backorder…to find a dozen other pictures I really, REALLY want to try….and ending back up on Facebook to find out when they’d be available again.

Do you see what I mean about evil?

When I took of my glasses to rub my burning eyes (which are in need of a new Rx, not to mention the fact that they probably hadn’t blinked once through the whole foray), I realized I’d lost almost two hours. Two freaking hours because of one thumbnail of a thumb nail!

Head, meet desk. Rise. Repeat.

Meanwhile, I have work and homework in addition to writing, editing and finding time to do all the other crap we grown ups seem to be obligated to do no matter how much we protest.

As much as I can appreciate and even find creative succor after falling into a wiki-hole, Pinterest is an insidious form of this kind of evil that even I am giving a wide berth. It is not for me. No way. Now, stop posting all your interesting pins to Facebook so I can stick to my convictions, damnit! 😉

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  1. Cindy
    March 28, 2012 at 2:15 pm

    My sentiments exactly, dear niece! That stuff is positively LETHAL!

  2. March 29, 2012 at 10:58 pm

    No Pin-thing for me! Though I miss the old haunt time sink. 😦

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