Information Overload

row of books in shelf
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I’ve been supporting my “need to know as much solid information as possible” habit this week a little too much. I am finally listening to the message that I need to meditate more often. I sense that my relationship with monkey mind has become too hot and heavy and not healthy or satisfying. I’d rather not participate in an unsatisfying and unhealthy relationship with my monkey mind, anyone or anything.


The information at my fingertips is so seductive. My strong predilection for research turns the results of my research process into information overload. It’s sort of like choosing ice cream flavors. Do I want pistachio, or butter pecan or chocolate almond fudge? Do I want to read, listen, or view information? Do I want to find out what the conservative, moderate or liberal media is reporting? Do I want to pay attention to the media outlets that target millenials, Gen X, Gen Y, SIlent Generation, Greatest Generation, or Baby Boomers? Do I want to know how Black Twitter is responding? What is being reported in the news from other than an American navel-gazing lens? I can find information from any of these perspectives if I just search the Internet, turn on my TV, or listen to live video content. There is a seemingly never-ending sea of information thatI can sail along anytime I wish.


One challenge with being a research junkie is that I forget to sit down and write about my own views, observations, ideas, thoughts, feelings. Well, that’s not entirely true; I don’t really forget about them. I just write them down briefly in a notebook and move on. I don’t pay as much attention to them as I could. I just move on. And now life isn’t just about moving on. Things have changed even more than and faster than they had been changing even a few days ago. 


So, I’m taking this opportunity to jot down or type up a few thoughts that I may expand on at a later time. Please note that there is a sense of humor imbued in several of these thoughts; in others there is a sense of wonder. I’m employing “hmmmm..” as often as I can.

  1. In a variety of the articles I’ve read, I have noticed that the reported age ranges of those who are in the highest risk category for COVID-19 has been 65 and older and 80 and older. What this tells me is that some people don’t want to come clean about how their age makes them vulnerable. I understand that you want to remain forever young, but this is no time for vanity, folks.
  2. Yesterday, a reporter on DW News joked at the end of his report and about Americans’ need for full  pantries. So, it seems that photos and reports of the empty store shelves in this country have been shown to the rest of the world. Has anyone been able to find toilet paper at a store over the past few days?
  3. When Judy Woodruff stops at the end of the PBS Newshour to speak “on a personal note” and remind viewers that they need to think about others, you know something’s up. Judy spoke about our need to think about our neighbors and “the most vulnerable among us” when shopping and refrain from buying up everything in the store, a practice more commonly known as hoarding. She said it kindly and in a low key manner, but the fact that she found it important to say it at all spoke volumes about Americans’ behavior in the face of a crisis.

    The Western way of “individualism” over “collectivism” has had its volume turned way up over the past week in terms of shopping practices. I was in a local store a few days ago and the shelves that normally hold tissues, paper towels and toilet paper were all empty. The store had hung a sign on one of the shelves explaining that they were out of stock on all 3 items due to recent trends in shopping.

I don’t know what to make of all of this, but right now, I just need to write it down. And perhaps for right now, I will pause.


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