I Miss Post Restante


I missed when we used to travel and would become disconnected from everything outside the world we occupied.

The internet era means there is no escape. We know what happens in a New York, Beirut, Reykjavik, Melbourne coffee shop as fast as a satellite beam can warn of another artic ice collapse, Syrian drought, Dakota crushing or Faroe whale slaughter.

I miss the post restante queues where people patiently waited to see if there was a postcard for them, and I never had to bother because no one knew where I was and by the time they found out I was gone.

I miss getting home to hear old friends explain the Hawke and Keating regime and the advent of Howard because I had missed all that but could say ‘I saw the Berlin Wall fall down and I saw Mandela walk free.’* Now we all see it instantaneously from a million miles away.

Why should I care about global steaming by some faded pop stars whom I had never heard in the first place doing a reunion / farewell / do-you-remember-when gig. Relive the memories to avoid the realities. Pack out the opera house steps so the nearby rich snobs can whinge that they paid for the views not the noise.

In thirty years people will look back on the internet period being as quaint as the post restante time.

They’ll be no need for a live global broadcast as cyborg Bono with rose coloured glasses and betrayers brain struts the stage with wishy-washy bleeding-hearted tunes performed to two hundred billion screaming … well, how many posturing holograms can you fit through the eye of a camel?

I wish I could escape the world of Peter Dutton and Donald Trump but their chemtrails penetrate everywhere.

If the needle fits, stitch them up.

If reality stinks then change it.

* With apologies to Johnny Clegg and in my own case not quite but almost literally true. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HDQlj6pjzZU