January 24, 2022

We Have Forgotten What Makes Us Happy.

We don’t talk anymore, we text.

We comment, and like, and share.
We don’t read, we watch.
We scroll and we copy links and we hit send.

In a group, we chuckle quietly to ourselves, or we turn our screens quickly saying, “OMG, you guys, look!” and that’s how we relate to each other, and all the while, all the while, the damn clock ticks.

As the clock ticks and the days pass, we are busy looking down. I’m doing it right now. My chin is nestled right the f*ck inside my neck. I’m wearing a furrowed brow, tightly squinted eyes, and a goddamn frown.

We are “always reachable,” yet we’re stuck in zombie zone.
We have a thousand “friends,” but we still feel alone.

We do not digest, we ingest.
We consume, we cram, we stuff.
We pack our schedules, our bodies, our minds.
We pack ourselves in, filling all the way up with too much.
Too many “to dos.”
Too many opinions.
Too many theories over facts.
There is no room for breath.
No room for stillness, for silence.

We choose reaction over contemplation.
We get our answers instantly, without education.

We get answers, yes, but then we forget them just as fast.

We no longer fondle books. Or tenderly turn a page.
We lose ourselves slowly inside the quick fixes.

We choose influence over substance.
Celebrity over humanity.
Apathy over empathy.
Time killing over time filling.

We don’t look inward, instead we look elsewhere.
We don’t savor, we plan.
Or, we pine.
Or, we simply spend our time in vain, trying to remember.
What are most of us trying to remember?
The good ole days.

While the clock ticks its constant sorrow, its beating goodbye, one thump per second, we still don’t talk. Instead we click. We take screenshots. We scroll.

We don’t work outside.
We “workout” inside on stationary bikes with tablets for metrics. Nowhere miles counted, showing us how much we’ve done, but not where we’ve been.

We maximize, instead of prioritize. We purchase beaded pillows and trendy cutting boards. Crap with our initials on it. We pull objects into our spaces to feed our need, but the rush they bring is fleeting. It is not sustainable.

We take pictures of our food for people “out there” with whom we’ve never sat down to share a meal. Or sip a drink.  Or laugh into the night. We gather followers we’ve never met.

We call it a “wonder,” a glorious virtual reality, this platform, this “people connector” in our pockets. Plugged in or charged up, it drains us dry. This “novelty,” no longer novel, and certainly not a novel. 

We have forgotten what makes us happy. Breaking news: this isn’t it.
Happiness is what we do and say and feel and hear and touch without this.

Everyone and everything looks the same these days.

Sound bites and songs.
Messaging and jokes.
Stupid human tricks and recipes.

We all look the same inside our 15 minutes of fame. 

The clock ticks, my heart beats, I blink and blink, and blink again, and know I’ve said a few more goodbyes.

Supposedly, we’re not bored. But, we sure are boring.


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