Get the *uckerberg off my pandemic

A brief history of the internet

The Internet has been a bustling farmyard of distraction techniques and manure for several years. Since time immemorial (circa 2007), we have wiled away our hours keeping up to date on the meals of people whom we have previously seen naked.

Internet use tends to fall into the following broad categories:

  • a perpetually oscillating cycle of self-destruction and self-soothing (Facebook/Instagram)


  • Looking up the weather forecast and ending up with a self-diagnosis of cancer (Google)


What is the purpose of the internet?

The Internet is designed to surprise us into losing years of our lives and developing prematurely arthritic thumb joints. Its ultimate function is to harvest data about you which Mark Zuckerberg then sells to himself for a profit, as part of a system which I admit I do not fully understand.

In this pandemic era, we might be tempted to sink our toes ever deeper into the fetid stench of online “content”. But we have another choice.

Here are three healthy, screen-free activities for you to enjoy today and every day during your house arrest.


Healthy Activity #1: Work on your Covid-19kg*

While all around you people lose their heads and post videos of their family Jogging on the Spot with Joe, find your own path to a 19kg weight gain in 12-24 weeks. By eating continuously and increasing your calorie intake by just 4 multipacks of Lion bars per day, you can expect to gain a colossal amount of weight in a limited time frame. As a side issue, none of your clothes will fit any more so make sure you build your Isolation Wardrobe around large swathes of material such as bath towels, sarongs and, if necessary, curtains.

*I stole this joke from my friend Marnie.


Healthy Activity #2: Pick ears with kirby grip

You know what they say, “never put something smaller than your elbow inside your ear.” Well, nowadays they also say “don’t go outside” so I think we can agree that we are experiencing something of a rule book renaissance.

Picking out earwax using the rounded end of a kirby grip is a former favourite pass-time of mine. Unfortunately, I had to give up a few months ago after contracting a fungal ear infection. I am in small town Cambodia, so this led to several repeat visits to a Catholic church (forgive me father) where there is, perplexingly, a very good ear doctor. He used a machine like a desktop hoover, which I think is frowned upon in the UK, to flush and suction out several handfuls of mushrooms. It was around this same time that I learned that my sister-in-law was also into ear picking. Her weapon of choice was a chicken feather which she had picked up from the road and whittled down. She then used this to pick her and her children’s ears. This made me feel less bad about the kirby grip.

You can easily fill 5-10 minutes with this activity. Make sure no one near you nudges into your elbow while they are doing an online workout routine.


Healthy Activity #3: Don’t do any personal hygiene

There has never been a better time to not be able to find the time to brush your teeth or take a shower. All those years lost to the rat race, stuck in the hamster wheel of work, caught in the mouse trap of money. We have spent such huge sections of our lives swamped in rodent metaphors for capitalism that we have completely forgotten where we were going with this paragraph. The revolution is here and it smells and looks terrible, don’t let it leave you behind.


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