It’s a golden age for retirement in many ways, but especially with the internet. I’m not honestly sure I could have happily early retired before the advent of the World Wide Web. I’m not kidding. I seem to have a constant need to be plugged into some kind of information source 24/7 to keep my ADHD mind busy.
Even pre-internet I was a big fan of newspapers, magazines, encyclopedias, almanacs, radio, TV, and the sort. Growing up, I loved going to the library or bookstore. I listened to ballgames or radio all night on a pillow speaker, and if I travelled on business, I’d leave the TV on all night.
No surprise, the internet has been a godsend for me. Who can be bored when all of the world’s knowledge is in the palm of your hand? As early as the mid-1990s, I was a fast adopter of AOL dial-up service. Even with those super-slow download speeds! I didn’t care. I loved to surf through all of the topics and interest groups.
To give you an idea of how internet-dependent I am, I noticed recently that I had 171 tabs open in Safari on my iPhone. I hadn’t ‘cleaned’ them out in a month – so that’s 5-6 new tabs a day – not counting the dozens that I did close.
Looking at the tabs is like a roadmap to what you’ve been thinking about over that time: hockey scores, a SpaceX rocket launch schedule, LEGO builds, Florida real estate listings, movie trailers, the history of St Augustine FL, a guide to vintage Christmas decorations, old Peanuts cartoons, Ford Mustang engine options, a Beach Boys documentary. and, of course, pages of COVID-19 information.
Looking at them all, you can see how easily I can easily spend an enjoyable hour or two sitting in my comfy chair with my big iPad in my lap. While I also spend plenty of time going places, waking/hiking/biking, playing sports, and exploring – surfing the internet on a rainy day in March isn’t boring at all. I never run out of things to go online and search for and learn about.
How internet-centric is your lifestyle? How different would it have been for you 25 years ago?
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