Ten reasons it’s easy to be a recluse in the modern era

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1. Virtual social life obscures lack of actual social life

You can pretend to have an active social life, be fully engaged in the latest details of the lives of hundreds of contacts just by posting the odd status update on Facebook or wherever and clicking a few random ‘likes’ here and there. There is no need to actually engage with anyone. Should anyone intrude on your personal space by making a comment on one of these updates you can just click ‘like’ until they go away again. I call this the virtual unreality.

2. If you can’t be a part of everything you might as well not exist

There are so many social media platform that if, say, you only really use Facebook and created a Twitter account for the sole purpose of thinking it’d somehow make your blog cooler there are so many other online arenas you are completely failing to engage with. When it comes to Tumblr and Pinterest and other things you don’t even know the name of you might as well be living in a cave.

3. Fisticuffs over Facebook will lead to societal meltdown, or at least intractable family divisions

I envisage that future wars will not be drawn up over boundary or ideological disputes but over those pro- and those anti-Facebook. Seriously, I’ve had some pretty heated exchanges with my brother about why he bothers with sending words via Twitter and images via Instagram when he could just combine the two in Facebook, he argues that FB knows more about me than my fiancé. One of these days it’ll come to fisticuffs at dawn.

4. Your social life depends on your smartphone battery, so its doomed

If you have an all-out power failure or maybe just misplace your phone charger your access to a social life will die in the amount of time that’s left in your smartphone battery. So that’ll be about two hours then.

5. It’s now so much easier to flake on people

It’s easy to ‘forget’ to actually meet people. Remember a life before smart technology when you used to meet people by making plans on Monday that you’d meet on Saturday at the waterfall in the shopping centre at 11, and somehow that actually worked? Now if you don’t confirm and reconfirm plans at least twenty times you have a legitimate excuse to just not show up by saying ‘I’m sorry, you didn’t facebook message me two seconds before I was going to leave the house so I assumed you weren’t coming’.

6. You can be a hermit without anyone noticing

You no longer need to leave your house. Ever. You can work remotely. You can order clothes and food online to be delivered to your door. You can attend online networking events. You can study online. You can meet new people online. You can even Skype friends and family if you really feel the need to look at someone in real time. Once you’ve mastered hurling your bin bags at the bin collection spot there’s no need for you to actually set foot outside ever again.

7. Too much homework to hold an actual conversation in the pub.

There is so much information online, Wikipedia articles, YouTube videos, virals of an elephant riding a horse balanced on the helmet of a man on a skateboard that if you try to go out in public without knowing what’s #trending you will be shamed into looking like a moron and lose any real friends you thought you had.

8. Cybertourism removes the need to actually go anywhere

Ever wanted to see the Pyramids, the heads of Easter Island or just the British Museum? Once upon a time you had to work bloody hard, save up loads of money and then you could go on an awesome trip none of your friends had done and enjoy bragging about it when you got home. Now everyone has already been everywhere that you can see what these places are like through friends pictures online or using GoogleEarth spyware, getting a drone or just doing one of the online tours tourists attractions are offering. Why get out of bed and risk encounters with the stinking masses when you can feel like you’ve had a productive day by having a quick online tootle around Parliament in your pyjamas whilst eating Marmite toast in bed. No-one can see you to judge the butter in your hair and crumbs on your face.

9. Reading the Daily Mail Online increases fear of the outside

Certain highly reputable yet overwhelmingly popular sites, in the UK it’s the Daily Mail online, I imagine in the US Fox news has some sort of online equivalent, would have you believe that the world is a terrifying place full of disease ridden immigrants, violent immigrants, insane immigrants, volcanic eruption-causing immigrants, traffic-inducing immigrants, financial-crisis-inducing immigrants and just bastard-stealing-candy-from-a-baby immigrants who make the world such a terrible place you might as well stay indoors.

10. Being a recluse is really what everyone wants

Technology has been designed to help people lead easier lives (and also to make us think we need expensive things to lead meaningful lives). Cave men lived in caves, which was great but in the age before technology it was realised it was actually easier to live together in commune to get more stuff done in an ‘I’ll milk your cow you give me a turnip’ sort of mentality. Nowadays we don’t need other people for comfortable lives but we still cling on to this concept so all this great technology helps us to transition away from old fashioned ideas of friendship, family and community and to progress towards single unit living, like the single-cell amoeba we all came from.

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22 thoughts on “Ten reasons it’s easy to be a recluse in the modern era

    • Hey nice to see you here! I liked your advice that following dreams sets a good example for OM’s kids. I’m having a poke around your site now, surreptitiously, whilst at work – I’m on European time

      Liked by 1 person

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