A question of scale and islands

Been quiet. Apologies to my reader.

A very odd week. Involved in filming, reporting, attending, criticising and reviewing things around mass collaboration, web technologies, ex-somethings, people, philosophies, running and cava. I have perhaps been an island too long and too often, yet some behaviours simply can’t be unlearnt overnight, no matter how much of a super-social ape one may be, and no matter how much of a shit-eating grin one may have (I don’t, for the record. I have the grump that keeps on giving, instead). And I ain’t no ape. I’m a badger.

Anyhoo. Funny how scale affects everyone. I’ve been running to and from work recently – not every day, but often enough for it to become a ‘thing’. It feels strangely liberating to be exercising for a purpose other than rote, for once. I even like the fact that I have yet to run past anyone else with a rucksack (I get passed at least once per trip) and that I’m constantly on the verge of pavement rage in the more populated parts of my run. It feels a bit like belonging to a different species. I run for a little over an hour. Some people think this is admirable – mad even – but I am acutely aware, thanks to Fetcheveryone, how puny my efforts really are. Which naturally, appeals to the side of me addicted to futility.

Which brings me to belonging. There are some social constructs that I now see as vital to my happiness, and to an indeterminate effect, my future ‘success’ in life. But increasingly I find myself at odds with what I perceive to be the philosophy of many aspects of my ‘work’. Or more accurately I guess, the application of that philosopy. Inherently, I like the idea of connectivity, networks, meta-spheres and any number of social aspects of the digital age. And to a lesser extent, innovation. But I find it difficult to engage with the relative importance placed on them.

No man is an island. I like the idea that bridges can be built between my island and your island. Or the world. Or a world. Or Mars. But I don’t like the idea that building them should be any sort of focus. Perhaps I’m being Cnutian. Or, I don’t know, Mohammedan. But I’ve always been at ease with my own company. I may be missing out on endless riches or opportunities (emotional or otherwise) but….

But.

My isolation, in some regards, keeps me innocent. And I really value innocence. I measure importance in very specific ways. I’m as naive as I am arrogant. Wistfully, he recognises they may be related. But. You see. I look at things and I am Yosser Hughes. I can do that. Or, occasionally, Eyeore. Or Marvin.

I will always be an outsider. Not in a bad way. Or a good way. Just in an ‘is’ way. The world will always be as I see it. And, thankfully, that will change on an almost daily basis. Which helps me in some ways and makes other (achievement) things more troublesome.

It’s a question of scale. And my very own, characteristic, idealistic, non-virtual, bona-fide island.

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