Lent Day 21 – (18 for me)

I feel good pretty good today – aside from being tired.  I finished my post last night and went to bed without watching any political videos on Youtube.  That’s kind of a hollow victory because I’ve been following the Trump situation voraciously on twitter.  I don’t have a twitter account, but if you know who you want to follow you can just go directly to their page and see all their tweets without logging in.

There is just so much going on right now.  It’s fascinating and horrifying, but the truth is that I’m not following this out of some deep concern for the world and for the United States.  My interest is not a selfless one.  I’m concerned, but I’m mostly following it like I might follow a TV show.  It’s almost as if Donald Trump is going for ratings.  I don’t think that he is, but if he was he would be doing a pretty good job (TV ratings – not approval ratings).

But, as with so many of my distractions, it uses up time and focus at the expense of other things…and so we reach another one of those uncomfortable moments of truth.  Am I going to write about how “I really should try to this less” or am I going to try and make a change.

Brian goes to work and comes home and returns to his post…

Well, it seems perfect that I wrote what I wrote this morning, because the day is almost done and I’m sitting down to finish this post after having watched political videos on YouTube for an hour.

Man, talk about having to eat words.  It feels good to come clean about it though, because my initial reaction was to delete the whole thing and start over, “I can’t finish this thing! How embarrassing.”

Well, I am going to finish it.  While it’s tempting to justify it and minimize it, I’m not sure if I want to do that either.  It’s certainly true that there’s worse things that I could be doing for an hour, but I also could use the sleep.  It’s just an escape, and generally sleep is much more useful than escape…generally, not always – but certainly when sleep is needed.  I just can’t tear myself away from this situation.  But I’m going to keep working at it.  I must admit that my efforts in recent weeks have been hollow or non-existent, but this weekend, I’m going to dig in and see how it feels.

Okay…here’s the commitment and we’ll see how it goes.  No twitter or youtube videos this weekend.  I’m going to do it.  I’m making it public and I’m all in.  It’s only two days.  It can’t be that hard.

I think that the problem with the internet is that we get addicted to pushing buttons and seeing something new and when it comes to a big news situation and something like twitter there’s always the potential for something new.  There’s some smart people who post some interesting thing and provide links to a lot of fascinating and thought-provoking stuff, and you get to push buttons in order to get it!  I’ve actually learned a lot about American government and the intelligence agencies.  I can also see how you could sucked into a partisan black hole.  If all you were doing was reading the people you agreed with on Twitter and Facebook, you could get your mind seriously warped.  I check out some of the people who are a bit loopy – you can find them on the right and the left.  It is fascinating stuff!

Now, I say “we get addicted to the internet” because I know that I’m not the only one, but I’m sure there’s a good chance that whoever you are reading this right now, you may not have this problem.  I don’t mean to paint everyone with my big brush.  But I certainly have this thing with information.  I just love pushing buttons.  But giving it up this weekend is actually perfect because tomorrow is Earth Hour, which I’ve always thought was a nice idea, but end up forgetting about it, so maybe this year I’ll remember to shut off the lights AND my computer.

I might even go to bed early and catch up on some sleep…maybe I shouldn’t let you know that I’m trying this… It’s a process people.  Little by little we make our way forward.

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