It’s the weekend, and a long weekend at that if you live in the United States. Monday is a holiday, which means that people generally scatter offline for three days. They may post an update to Twitter or throw up a picture on Instagram, but my rss reader has been a little thin this weekend.
My rss reader rarely feels emaciated. This is because I am constantly replenishing it with new blogs. Sure, bloggers stop writing, but new ones step into their place, and I add them to my reader. But even so, long weekends mean that tumbleweeds roll through the semi-empty reader; the only posts peeking up are the ones from large sites giving me 10 new uses for popsicles and 5 reasons I should apply extra sunscreen.
Not that there’s anything wrong with good, old-fashioned, informative posts. I can read them for a bit, but after the third post on the topic du jour (is it something asinine that Trump said or a new meme sweeping the Internet?), I get tired.
I like personal blogs; especially posts that make me think or see the world from a different point of view. I’m willing to wait until after the weekend to get them again.
I recently read a post on internet overload. It stems from the fear that you’ll miss out on an important fact if you skip over a story or take a break from Twitter for a few days. That scrolling past more is better than pausing on a single thought:
A person’s fear of being left behind because he failed to consume enough data may start to outweigh the need to understand exactly why you are consuming this data in the first place. Every minute of the day, Facebook users share 2.5 million pieces of content, Twitter users tweet 300,000 times, YouTube users upload 72 hours of video, and 200 million emails are sent.
That is a lot of content.
Knowing so much exists is somewhat freeing because clearly no person can consume everything being produced. It’s impossible, so there is no harm in taking a step back and not allowing yourself to be overwhelmed by the deluge of tweets and status updates and photos and videos. It’s okay to not tap into the zeitgeist for a long weekend because the zeitgeist will still be there on Tuesday, churning out more things to read or gaze at or share.
It’s funny; I get weighed down by tweets. I get overwhelmed by photos on Facebook. I get tired of reading article after article about how I’m doing everything wrong, or the latest election news, or how the world is going to hell.
But I never get internet overload from personal blogs. From hearing people’s stories.
Sometimes the stories are so sad that I need to step back for a moment to catch my breath, but I never walk away from personal blogs feeling as if my brain is buzzing and I can only skim the surface and no longer dive deeply into words.
Hope you come back from the long weekend and write about it. Or tell us what you’re doing to relax today.