I get sidetracked. I build a webpage. The font isn’t exactly the right color. I buy software that I can’t use, and the vendor won’t refund it. I download photos in the wrong format, and can’t convert them. There is always the promise, with electronics, of improving something — don’t like the font? Use a different one. Don’t want to open your own emails? Set a rule. Every optimization introduces a proliferation of possibilities– fonts with shadows, integrating the shadowy fonts with your notification system, integrating the whole notification system with your printed calendar, printing the calendar on t-shirts, sending the printed t-shirts to various groups of friends, that you can tag, according to how well you know them and how many t-shirts you want them to have.

I watched a movie about drummers last night. All these gifted, amazing drummers. Some of them looked like trolls from a Tolkien novel. One was strikingly handsome, with polished white teeth and a long ponytail, a single frown line between his eyebrows, which made him look serious, even though his eyes were kind. One was tiny, with a short neck, short arms and a barrel chest. They sat together, like messengers from a world of crystals and magic, telling the interviewer why they drum– to find joy, to go back to the arms of their mother, because drumming is the beating heart, the core of life. The only difference between them and anybody else is that they drum. They drum so hard blood comes from their hands. They drum four hours, take a short break and drum some more. The message came through loud and clear: we are what we repeatedly do. Stay away from the internet. Try not to waste this precious time.

Blog posts. A churning stream of bright shiny advice, culminating in little pop up windows in which the writer invites you to join their email list, so you can get new advice every Monday, at the end of which, eventually, will be a whole series of attempts to monetize this project: an ebook, a podcast, a “click through to Amazon” link in which you can buy related products. Write more, better, faster. Stop procrastinating. Give up your day job. Improve your running speed. Meditate. These were the cheesy ads that used to appear on the back of comic books when I was a child. Jack LaLane, first skinny and stooped, ballooning into the strong man at the circus– never get sand kicked in your face again. Now they are everywhere– beautiful internet temptations, written by hipsters, lined up like craft beers. We need to be careful. We might be smart enough to avoid a cheesy ad at the back of a comic book, but who can resist the tasteful, touch-screen responsive invitation to finally, once and for all, get this mess under control?