diamond geezer

 Wednesday, May 14, 2003

20 top ways to fill time and avoid boredom (5-7)

5) Internet: You need never be bored and alone with the internet. Go back ten years and your computer was merely a word processor that played games which crashed all the time. Now, thanks to the internet, your computer is a gateway to the world. Type the right combination of letters into that box at the top of the page and you can be transported virtually anywhere, find out almost anything about even your most obscure interest, download that musical masterpiece you never thought you'd hear again, read what other people are thinking, even tell other people what you're thinking and hope they're interested enough to read it. We used to rely on search engines to seek out original and interesting net content. Now it's quite possible to lose yourself wandering around in the blogosphere for hours, clicking from link to link. I'd like to suggest that blogs are the new search engines. Blogs save you, the reader, from all that tedious hassle of trying to think up what to search for in the first place. Instead you merely drop in on a favourite blogger and they've done all the thinking and searching for you. No wonder Google wanted to buy us all up, we're much more interesting, we're much more coherent, we have a better selection of links and we occasionally throw in some original content too.

6) Work: You may think that work is one of the more boring things in your life, but consider how much more boring life is for those without work. These people are trapped forever in a daytime desert, stuck in the limbo between Kilroy and Countdown, waiting for everyone else to get home from yet another day at work where they were actually doing something. This may be little comfort to those of us who've ever sat doodling desperately to stay awake during an interminable meeting, but our lives would be a whole lot more empty without any meetings to go to at all. However long our working hours may feel, most of us spend no more than 20% of the hours in a year actually at work. Choose your job carefully, if you can, and that 20% can sail by. Choose badly and, well, were you staring at the clock at quarter past three this afternoon, willing the second hand to spin round just that little bit faster? You should check the situations vacant more often - maybe it's time to escape from your vacant situation.

7) Pets: If your life is empty, fill it with an animal. A cute ickle puppy maybe, just so long as you don't mind it growing into something enormous that demands to take you for walks when you'd rather stay in and watch the television. A titchy tiny kitten perhaps, just so long as you don't mind the ungrateful beast buggering off out of the house all day when its older, returning at night only to eat foul-smelling food and fill the litter tray. A chubby-cheeked hamster in a cage maybe, just so long as you don't mind it waking up in the middle of the night and squeaking round its wheel for hours, only to drop dead after a few weeks well before you've got your money's worth out of it. A tank full of swishy shiny silver fish perhaps, just so long as none of them ever realise the pointlessness of their existence during the 23 hours 58 minutes a day that you're not watching them. Or just go the whole hog and turn your entire house into a farm, just so long as you don't mind living with the smell, the hair, and a mop and bucket.

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