Tag Archives: inaugural dinner

Once Upon a Time, I was going to Disappear

I no longer have a clue how I’m going to get there, but my goal at one time, which was attainable years ago, was to go live on some acreage surrounded by many, many more acres of nothing.

Go completely off grid.

Cut myself off completely from any form of media.

The only thing I would have is a phone so I could keep in touch with my kids.

There were times when I was at that location for a week at a time. No radio, no television. The closest town was 17 miles away and if you had enough food, there was no reason to go there. Since this spot was on some small lakes, there was an endless source of fish and if I was living there, I could grow everything else I needed.

After being out there for a week I would have to head home and, with the radio on, I would hear about all these events that had occurred while I was oblivious to the world.

And I would realize that me knowing about any of it meant absolutely nothing. It didn’t matter. If I had been living out there I would have never known anything about any of these events unless I drove into town and someone started up a conversation…

“Did you know there was a total blackout of a big chunk of the U.S. and Canada?”

“Uhhh, no.”

“It was awful, people were looting, little mini riots were breaking out, others were hunkered down in anticipation of the worst.”

“Hunh, sounds awful. I was out fishing those days. It wasn’t bad. I’ll bet the stargazing was pretty good those days with no lights, ya think? Probably could see the Milky Way.”

And then the conversation would die, I’d pay for whatever it was I came for and leave.

What triggered this train of thought was a little video snippet of Michelle Obama at the inaugural dinner for her husband. The short video showed the President and John Boehner having a conversation, talking to each other while leaning behind Michelle’s back. She rolls her eyes and shakes her head at Boehner over whatever he said and for some reason I was sucked into going to see this.

Apparently I wasn’t alone. In less than 12 hours, over a half million other people had to go look. To top it all off, over a thousand people felt the need to comment on it. I realized at that moment that I was looking at and reading things that simply didn’t matter. And I was doing it on a regular basis. And I couldn’t seem to put the brakes on my behavior.

The internet in general and social media in particular have become like chocolate in my house.

If there is one speck of chocolate in my house, I am going to find it and eat it. If there is none, I’ll lament the fact that there is none, but I won’t go out of my way to get any. Eventually I’ll forget all about it and go out fishing somewhere.

Some day I’ll figure out how to get a chunk of land and go off grid. I might have a computer so I can write things down now and then and play with photographs, but there will be no internet connection.

I’m sure there will be times, due to force of habit, that I’ll wander around lamenting the fact that there is no internet connection. Eventually I’ll forget all about it and go out fishing. Or for a walk, maybe sleep out under the stars and watch the Milky Way do, well, nothing.

And then I’ll go into town for my once a month supplies and someone will probably start up a conversation…

“I really feel sorry for those people out in California.”

“Hmmmm?”

“The earthquake out in California. It’s gotta be tough on the people out there.”

“When was there an earthquake?”

“Two weeks ago. Two thirds of the state pulled away from the rest of the continent. The Gulf of California now stops just south of Sacramento. You didn’t hear about any of this?”

“No, must have been out fishing and missed it. Did tie into an unusually large school of big crappie a couple of weeks ago. Wonder if that earthquake had anything to do with it. So, the Gulf of California goes all the way to Sacramento, eh? You been getting any fishing reports out of Fresno then? Might be good now. Well, gotta go. See ya next month and let me know if you here anything about that fishing in Fresno.”