In my part of North America, not many people have seen a gnat. We used to have tons of them, back during my childhood in Scotland – the local name was ‘midges’, but technically, I’m assured they were considered true `gnats’.
Midges are such tiny little flies, they’re almost invisible. On their own, hardly noticeable – but they take to the air in clouds.
Midges get up your nose, in your eyes and hair and down your throat. While you’re busy swallowing half the cloud, the rest chomp invisible chunks out of your flesh in happy unison till all you are left with are huge itchy red blotches. Try to swat them, and they’re somewhere else.
They don’t stay still. Speaking of which…
I finally decided to bite the bullet and sign up for Twitter. I wasn’t quite sure what it was. Just that I’m always being warned I’m missing out on keeping up with clients and peers. After all, one must stretch one’s envelope to grow, you know. It’s bad enough that my name is actually in a museum, as I recently found out. (The Brantford Museum Of Personal Computers. Hails back to the heady days of my technological infancy, when Commodore 64s roamed the earth.)
Why, I still consider blogging new. So imagine my surprise (naïve fool that I am) when I saw that Twitter posts were limited to a mere 140 characters. I asked a Twittaholic friend why the restraint, and she readily answered, “So it doesn’t strain people’s brains. RSS feeds take too much time to read, you know.”
“140 characters, so brains won’t burn out?” I cry. “Not because we’re stupid, but because we’re all multi-tasking on fast forward, like adrenalin-flooded, formula one race car drivers! Everything’s already flashing past at speeds too fast to grasp! The way life is accelerating feels like being on a runaway train speeding downhill – we’re all going to crash!
“And it’s going to be a terrible wreck. People will be dying at 30, because they’ve maxed out their body systems, multi-tasking like chihuahuas on caffeine-”
But she was gone.