Too Much to Digest

Even the moon gets full.

* * *

I’m staring at it with disgust, gorging myself with every byte, trying to choke it down. My brain feels like the man who ate fifty hotdogs in five minutes. At least he was able to time out. ‘Enough is enough’ were his final words.

But still, it keeps coming, volumes of it, unabated, the wait staff gloating with glee at the man chained to the chair, screens everywhere, the digital world assaulting him with a revolting smorgasbord of news. He’s imprisoned in the dungeon of the ‘screen world’ where the word ‘enough’ is seldom heard.

The appetizers of advertising pop up on every screen, tantalizing with its variety of offerings for every taste. So many choices, who can choose?

The tidbits of Twitter’s trough of small plates arrive, irresistible to resist tasting. The entre of emails, thick with the red-meat bulk of misinformation, is followed by the dainty but provocative teasing desserts of texts. Will the deluge ever end?

No. Our eyes are bigger than our brains, we’re hooked. The news food wagon makes house calls, finds us everywhere…in our automobiles, on street corners, in offices, in restaurants, on buildings, streamers trailing airplanes. The news, the news, a feeding frenzy 24/7 for every appetite.

We pop Zantac like uppers, our eyes bug out, our brains are stuffed to explosion, our senses are dulled, we’re like zombies, victims of this onslaught of news. Oh, what wretched creatures we’ve become. There’s no escape. Or is there?

Yes, but it’s a hard cure to walk out of the screen restaurant with its alluring menu of amusements for every sentiment.  Must our eyes become blind, our ears deaf, our taste buds cauterized, our brains enduring shock treatments? Even our fingers twitch uncontrollably, yearning to scroll. They suffer the delirium tremens of keyboard abandonment.

Somehow, we must find our way out of the dark alleys of metaverse back into the real world of the here and now where we make our own news, where we choose our meal, and we have cut our screen time down to zero. But is it possible to return to reality, to leave such an enticing world of diversion from the swirl of events?

Yet, who can tear themselves away from the continuing courtroom saga of Depp and Heard, or from the media melodrama warning of babies lying dead in the streets from lack of Similac baby formula. Then there’s the intriguing Mafia myths that surround blanched bodies found in barrels in the dried lakebed of Lake Mead?

Forget if you can the cult of Putin, or the fecklessness of politicians with their crock pots crammed with crocks of lies posing as promises. Monkeypox is on the way for stimulus payments.

But we can’t. Inflation has us on hyper alert and we’re glued to the sideshows of continuing drama as the circus caravan moves along, day by day, always a new menu of options for every taste and habit.

Maybe it’s all just a bad dream, a parallel universe we’re living in that will soon vanish and we’ll wake up.

What, wake up? That’s novel. Wake up to what? Wake up to reality, that’s what, to the reality we’re out of control.

* * *

Sadly, if we want out, we’re on our own. Read the exit sign: Turn off, tune out and kick back. Enough is enough. Even the moon gets full occasionally.

Meanwhile, don’t let your eyes take your brain on a trip it can’t handle.  Good luck.


Bud Hearn

May 24, 2022