November 03, 2004
the webpage that isn't anywhere

It's days like this, when I'm filled with multiple anxieties (the next four years, the party, the aper, the work, the things I need to do, the people I need to do things for) that I find my self doing it.

I'm drawn to the computer, over and over again. I go to it, confident and sit down. I open a web browser.

This is the first pause.

I shake it off, and begin to load a sequence of tabs. One folder of bookmarks is technology news. I might linger over tab one, but then I shoot through them all and close the window.

I open a new window and go to the next set of tabs. News and blogs. Mostly just to look at Boing Boing. But maybe warren has something new to say, or perhaps Tom Tomorrow has been freshly outraged by something via Daily Kos.

But let's get real. Even Boing Boing only updates 10 to 20 times a day.

I'm checking more frequently than that.

It's hard to describe the desperate quality this begins to take on. Suddenly I switch back into old modes, magic. Random phrases, serendipity. I trade information science for throwing bones via Google.

What I've begun to realize is I'm looking for a web page that isn't there. It never was, that I know of. It can't have ever been there.

It's the web page that somehow contains the information that makes everything all right.

Today, it would probably be a headline: OOPS! Biggest vote count error in history discovered with the subtitle Kerry actually wins Ohio, Florida and the Presidency. There would probably also be a small sidebar about how either the party is going to be fun for everybody. Or the paper will be well received. You get the idea, I think. This is the web page that has all the information that makes everything all right, somehow.

What's funny is that there is a corner of my mind, mostly unconscious, that I think truly believes this website exists somewhere. I don't know what to make of it, not that I've realized what the tic is.

Is it the part of my mind that would look for god or salvation? Is it a side effect of being too enmeshed in the grid? Is it a symptom of the oversaturation of the digital in my life?

What's weird is when I let my mind wander, I can almost see this page. I mean, I see the edge of it. It's like being able to see the stream that borders Avalon-over-the-Hill, but only out of the corner of your eye.

So maybe I am seeing this in religious terms. An impulse to visit The last bookmark in any browser's list with blissful reading satisfaction promised to all who find the page.

Ok, now I'm rambling.

Posted by illovich at November 03, 2004 10:01 PM