Happy belated birthday internet! Where’s Al Gore! Let’s shake that man’s hand! Oops, you mean to tell me he really didn’t create the internet? It’s true; he did not. I’m fairly certain I’m at least a decade past the prime of making fun of Al Gore and the internet – so does that make it retro? Besides we all know that Al Gore invented global warming – DAMN YOU Al Gore!!! In honor of this wonderful time in human history, known simply as Electronic Babylon or How Humanity Forgot to Communicate While They Communicated, I have decided to give you the top 5 biggest ways the internet changed my life – excluding porn, because that’s just too easy of a softball to hit!
#5. Shopping Addictions! Let’s face it, as a guy I hate going shopping, but I love buying shit. The online market place, not to be confused with the healthcare market place – a place where nobody can buy anything, has opened the door to a whole generation of male window shoppers. I can’t tell you how many baskets of sports supplements, audio equipment, car stereos (wtf, my car stereo is already great,) running shoes, computers, and cell phones that I’ve had to empty after I remember I’m too poor to buy any of that shit whether it’s online or in store. Maybe the best part of online window shopping is price comparison; I can literally price compare the different brands of the adult diapers I’ll end up wearing in 30 years, it’s fucking fantastic.
#4. Emotional Detachment. A real added bonus to the internet is the lack of actual emotion I have to feel for people. I can text bad news, good news, find out about a dead loved one, and it’s like it’s already at a distance. I’ve got students breaking up with each other on Facebook. Hell you can practically get laid without actually touching the other person with apps like Snap Chat or Kik. It’s an amazing time to be alive. I can disengage from any actual conversation I have and plug into my virtual life, where I don’t have to worry about responding poorly, having consideration for others feelings, or stalking.
#3. Chronicling every step of my Life. I have an extremely exciting life as you can tell from my social media life. My kids are growing up as you can easily see – day by day – every move they make, from eating strained peas to pooping on the toilet for the first time. An orchestra concert, yup! There’s the video and 20 pictures to go along. Letting everyone know that I worked out today, and I burned “X” amount of calories, and had a sanctimonious I’m better than you fruit smoothie for breakfast, while I brewed my organic fair trade coffee. Step by step to my grave you get to follow the story of my life! Hmmm, is that what that 1 Directions song is really about? Ohhh, I just had another thought – status update – tweet tweet! Hashtaging your hashtag!
#2. Adult Onset Content Driven ADD. I never had ADD as a kid or pre-technology boom; however, as the revolution has become a hand held device world, where I can watch Netflix, YouTube, and scroll Twitter and Facebook, clicking on links, taking surveys, and finding out which Muppet character I am, I have developed a Web Content based form of ADD. I NEED to check Weather Bug a dozen times a day, that’s normal, right? I cannot fall asleep without one more article from Huffington Post, RT, Buzzfeed or my new guilty pleasure Hacker, Ninja, Hooker, Spy. Just one more game of Ultimate Puzzle – I’m actually not a video game player – takes too much time sitting in one place – if I could walk and type on my laptop I would. My attention flies in and out as quickly as Flappy Bird was popular. At dinner time, when all the devices are off I bounce my knee up and down waiting impatiently for the next input I can get – Luke, you want to play Legos? Let’s build – this may be a slight exaggeration, but you get my point. I’m sure none of this has to do with my anxiety.
#1. (Speaking of anxiety.) WebMD and the Self Diagnosis! Perhaps the greatest gift the web has given me (us) is the ability to be a complete hypochondriac when I want. What’s that pain in my chest area? A coronary event? Lung cancer? A hematoma? What the fuck is a hematoma anyways? That headache HAS to be an aneurysm. “I’m absolutely positive the only way to find out what is wrong doc is to do a CT scan.” I mean hell, I created AOCD ADD in #2 above – I’m certain this is a real condition or should be. I’m sure doctors love WebMD and the fact that their really expensive medical degrees get used like toilet paper by Junior College drop outs who are experiencing pains in their guts that aren’t tumors but constipation brought on by fast food diets, extra large Cokes, and cigarettes.
I didn’t say that the internet changed my way beneficially, and I didn’t include porn – which really could go either way; but really, has technology, has the internet, improved my life? I don’t know. I guess it has given me a place to write absurd shit like this, but as far as usefulness, I suppose it’s better than the US Postal Service or the public library.