The Hell Now 05/21/21

Yesterday, I wrote to a friend on a private group chat that I experienced feelings of meaninglessness at times. “It hasn’t sunk into me like used to,” I wrote. “Much more a devil on the shoulder than a black mold venom infection. I’m finding a weird kind of enlightenment in short periods of deep nihilism. Nothing matters, but instead of that being a reason to commit suicide, it’s the main reason for being. If the universe is pure meaning, entering into a human body is the only way the universe can experience meaninglessness, and therefore it is beautiful.”

It’s gone now. The feelings of depression are so fleeting. They don’t last for months or years like they used to. Just the occasional visit from the old friend. Maybe I’m too busy to be depressed, really, or maybe there’s something to the sideways angle I come at it from. Maybe it’s the exercise, or the sobriety, or the diet (although that has certainly fallen off…pizza is too easy to order…). I’m not interested in playing detective on this one, though, as I’m simply happy with it the way it is.

The depression disappearing has a fourth potential root cause, and if you read yesterday’s blog, you’ve probably already guessed it: 24 hours into my Twitter sabbatical and I’m already better. Just like that.

I have dubbed the time spent on social media as the Hell Now. It is the debased and corrupt version of being in the moment. The Ancient Greeks had different words for different versions of time. Chronos is clock time, Kairos is deep time, aion is cosmic time. I may have this wrong. But I recall from an episode of Weird Studies that one of those three words for time could be understood as follows: every Tuesday is the same Tuesday. It’s “vertical” time, rather than “horizontal.” One long Tuesday. One long Monday. One long meal, one long sleep, one long dream.

Every second on Twitter is the same second. I think of it like a Jenga Tower of Babel made of worms and stacked to the heavens. A pulsating, wet finger from space. It is the Hell Now, and no amount of funny shit on it can get you out of its grips.

To come back down to earth, it’s also fucking addicting. I’m not sure I’ve ever been more addicted to anything except nicotine, and at least there’s a chemical at the heart of that thing.

The weather here is changing, and summer is on the way. The car was hot for the first time when I got in it this morning to run errands. The brain is changing, too. I’m not going back to Twitter, not like I used to. I’ll use it with the condom of HootSuite, filing Tweets on Sunday, maybe to post one per week. Just so that corner of the Hell Now doesn’t think I’ve disappeared.

But it is truly a monster, for some people. If your brain works like mine, maybe. It’s a summer for pushing my son in his stroller and letting the sun turn my skin to leather. I know the Worm Tower is still out there in deep space like an Elder God, but I’ll leave it there. I’m not going to plug back in.

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