Howard Saunders   Aug 01, 2022   Uncategorized   0 Comment

One month of digital abstention,

Time to shut down our screens for a bit

To quell our addiction to online attention

Just hold down the button to quit

Break free from the chains of LinkedIn

Shut down Facetime, Webex and Zoom

Let’s live for the moment we’re in

Here in the last chance saloon

Tinder must be deleted

(And Grindr, if that floats your boat)

Your life will feel much more completed

With truth as the antidote

Let’s forgo Fortnite for a couple of weeks

Just like an endurance test

Say ‘Hasta la vista, you virtual freaks!’

Your avatar needs the rest!

You must resist the itch to tweet

Don’t become a political junkie

No need to publish every meal that you eat

(Leave that for the Instagram monkeys)

What shall we call this digital prison

This hell in which we’re fully immersed,

Where we’re force-fed a diet of narcissism?

Let’s call it the Metaverse!

Pronouncements of 280 letters

Make not for authentic debate

Don’t become yet another muck spreader

Switch off before it’s too late

Snapchat may well be alluring

But we know it’s eroding our souls

It’s high time for social maturing

With some real life, responsible goals

Now, imagine your life as a video game

As you wander around the house

You can touch things almost exactly the same

Without a haptic mouse

Consider the calm that you will feel

Without need to comment or mock

You might even enjoy a romantic meal 

Without checking on TikTok

Reality, not the virtual kind

Is unfamiliar with TikTok dancing

But freed from the digital daily grind

You’ll find life can be so life enhancing

Tech-vacations are more than essential

Uncoupling from our screens

Exploring one’s untapped potential

Without Google knowing where you’ve been

Our phones, you see, are Trojan horses

Listening to every word

So that armies of Outrage Archeologists

Can analyse what they’ve heard

So, don’t dance to the tune of the algorithm

That’s what it wants you to do

Believe me your sins will not be forgiven

When they come looking for you

Like fish we’re all ensnared, and yet

We should have guessed their game

When they launched the inter-net

The clue was in the name!

So switch the switch and pull that lever

For we know what we must do

It’s time for some decompression fever

Our deadline’s long overdue 

Relax, the bends will soon disperse

As reality takes its hold

It’ll feel like a brand new universe

As life starts to unfold

So let’s go off grid for August

And do humanity proud

No need to be so modest

Make sure you shout it out loud:

“I am a living, breathing human

Pronouns, she, him, her and his!

I’m a free man, or a free woman

…whatever the hell that is.”

Please follow me on Twitter @retailfuturist for retail news and random, related nonsense

About Howard Saunders

The Retail Futurist, otherwise known as Howard Saunders, is a writer and speaker whose job it is to see beyond retail’s currently choppy waters. Howard spent the first twenty five years of his career at some of London’s most renowned retail design agencies, including Fitch & Company, where he created concepts, strategies and identities for dozens of British high street brands. In 2003 he founded trend-hunting agency, Echochamber, inspiring his clients with new and innovative store designs from across the globe. Howard relocated to New York in 2012 where the energetic regeneration of Brooklyn inspired his book, Brooklynization, published in 2017. His newfound role as champion for retail’s future in our town and city centres gave rise to the title The Retail Futurist. Howard has been interviewed on numerous television and radio programs and podcasts for BBC Radio 4, BBC Scotland, the British Retail Consortium, Sky News Australia and TVNZ, New Zealand. His talks are hi-energy, jargon-free journeys that explore the exciting, if not terrifying, retail landscape that lies ahead. When not in retail mode, Howard has recorded, literally, thousands of digital music masterpieces, most of which remain, thankfully, unheard.

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