We speak of paying attention and spending time as a matter of course. It seems the names are more apt than we realize. The demand for time in the world, though, is at an all-time high. We create as much new data every day as all humanity created between its birth and the year 2000, and it’s only going up. Millions of people are throwing things at a giant wall, seeing what sticks in our ears and minds. It’s an attention economy that we’re all at the center of, buying and selling in equal measure. I cannot pretend to be outside it, as the very act of making a blog turns me into a vendor.
What sort of trail, I wondered, has a sign posted only to end within fifteen feet? The location, too, was odd, leading into an empty lot in a suburban neighborhood. I’d had a couple of hours free before meeting a friend. It had sounded dull to simply sit in my car reading, so I drove around to find a good spot to read. The trail, such as it was, had caught my eye. Now I stood there, looking down a hill to an undeveloped area. On a whim, I decided to follow and see what lay beyond. After the trail, I picked a careful path down the hill, passing the grave of a housecat. I paid my respects, briefly, then continued walking.