I feel a strong urge to go back to the era of blog posts, and longer, thoughtful contributions to the online world. Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, and Facebook are like a continuous diet of popcorn. I'm wanting something more substantial. And I feel that the major Internet engines, particularly Facebook and Google, are constricting our view of the world and of the Internet, showing less that is simple and solid and good and whittling everything down so all that remains is what's most lucrative for them or what they claim is the most popular.
So I'm thinking of connecting the old way to a network of blogs, with chains and webs of links from posts and websites - a network without the major search engines and the precooked, commercially curated social media platforms, and reading what I find the old way: word of mouth and connections curated by other real people, not algorithms. The algorithms lately seem more and more demented and shallow. I'll link these posts on Facebook, to help others make the trip over here, and I'll keep posting images on Facebook, but I'm going to spend more time over here.
And I'll start by describing my surprise pleasure in starting new things that are really difficult for me. In the last year I've started learning Spanish (not so hard - I took it in high school, so it wasn't really from scratch), Tai Chi (self learning from the Internet and books - fun to go from, "This makes no sense and is surprisingly difficult" to "I feel the chi, and my body is starting to naturally get on one leg") and Tap Dancing (classes with Dear Wife and Oldest, who are one session ahead of me - I found I didn't even know how to hear the beat correctly, much less move my body to it and make music with my shoes). More about all of these in future posts - but the point here is the deep childlike glee I have found in struggling with something new for which I barely have a frame of reference, and for which I haven't even got a good place to start. It's like wrestling with a mountain, getting down on my face in the earth and hugging it tight, laughing, and then, ever so slowly, finding ways to move it. Nothing feels quite like that.
I"m also enjoying the process of going deeper with the things that are past the beginner phase - and maintaining a beginner's mind as much as possible. More on that, later, as well.
I may have found the fountain of youth.