The Internet is a veritable goldmine of information – between LOLcats, Youtube, Wikipedia and TV Tropes, you’d be hard pressed not to be able to find something to amuse you for hours – that’s why I haven’t sat in front of a TV for any extended periods of time in years.
This recent weekend though, I sat in front of the TV for a lot longer than I can remember doing for ages, watching both the men’s and women’s finals of the Australian Open. The match between Serena Williams and Justine Henin, despite being Henin’s big comeback after having a child, was largely uninspiring. Andy Murray however, put up a great fight in the 3rd set against Roger Federer, making for some truly riveting moments. While still not back to level of the glory days of Edberg, Agassi, et al, men’s tennis hasn’t been this good for a long time – thank God that the era of the ridiculous serving machines and baseline bashers is over (women’s tennis is still there though, no thanks to the Williams sisters).
Getting to the point, I experienced an epiphany while watching a sport that I used to enjoy. I found myself getting bored (Jenny quit watching as soon as Federer started winning). My mind started wandering during the longer rallies, and I was itching to go Google something in between every point (15-0: the recipe for green onion pancakes! 30-0: did anybody respond to my Facebook status? 30-15: am I missing out on a deal at OzBargain? etc.)
Non-existent attention span aside, my point is that the Internet has ruined me for the mundane. A daily dose of awesome, served up fresh to my browser via RSS at my every beck and call, has skewed my sense of the ordinary towards the extremes of FTW and Epic Fail. Think about it the next time you Twitter or update your Facebook status: are you self-censoring by only posting things that meet some kind of criteria of what you feel is worth your friends’ time? Against this tide of vanity, how can you not start to feel that your own life is inadequate?
I realised that this affects my writing too. I couldn’t marr my blog with any old crazy thought that graced my mind – each post has to inspire, demonstrate my clearly superior intellect, and impart knowledge that transcends mortal understanding. Likewise my poetry was for naught if it didn’t tear at the very foundations of your soul… you get the idea.
I resolve in 2010 to be more mediocre. Next time you see a boring blog post or status from me, you’ll know that I’m doing it for you.
btw, I still haven’t found a good recipe for Green Onion Pancakes yet. Do share…