So I’ve been offline for a week. Did I miss anything?, he asked rhetorically.
Katie and I did exactly what I said we were going to do. Last Tuesday night I turned off the router. I shut down my computer and turned off my phone. On Wednesday morning talked about our current creative projects over eggs, toast, and coffee. No screens, no news. Then we went out for the day. It was just a normal weekday in Central Finland.
When we got home at around 4:30, I turned on the television. Still didn’t turn on the router. Watch France 24, the English-language French news channel. They presented nothing but the facts, no hyperbole or editorializing. We saw that the votes had not all been counted yet, and what the current electoral vote count was.
Then I turned on the router, but only so I could access the FITE TV app on my phone. I streamed the latest episode of AEW Dark (that’s a professional wrestling show, if you don’t know) to the TV. Didn’t open anything else. Since I only have Twitter and Instagram theses days, and I took them off of my phone Tuesday night, I couldn’t.
After wrestling, I opened the Shout Factory app and streamed their 24/7 Mystery Science Theater 3000 channel to the TV. I grilled some fantastic all-pork hot dogs, and we ate raw veggies with dip I made using Turkish yogurt, and we topped it off with banana splits.
Then I turned the router off and we went to bed.
What I’m Doing Today
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This morning I need to do the weekly accounting for Dancing Lights Press. Exciting stuff. The afternoon will be spent editing the book I’m releasing this Friday, a 32-page supplement for the DoubleZero system that among other things is a pastiche of Doom Patrol, The Umbrella Academy, and The Royal Tenenbaums. You know, the “oddballs and found families in big strange houses” genre.
After dinner I want to read. I have no idea yet. Assuming I can disconnect from work mode, I will likely dive into one of the remaining Booker Prize shortlist novels. If I can’t find my way out of work mode, I have a stack of marketing books.
Been Offline a Week, Did I Miss Anything?
At some point today I need to get caught up on what’s happening in the world. It has been pleasant, though, to focus on what’s in my control. It feels like an act of rebellion to say no, I will not give these assholes the power to ruin my day, to trigger my anxiety and depression, to make me fearful for the world. I know that ignoring it won’t make it go away. The alternative feels too much like voluntarily running into a burning building on the verge of collapse, though.