The Quantity Theory of Insanity.

Being Human

The commuter traffic jam is the peak of man’s unhappiness.

It’s a situation outside of your control, probably on the way to a location you don’t want to be at, at a time you didn’t choose. It is noisy, shamefully inefficient, encourages mis-directed frustration at one’s fellows, and you have absolutely zero ability to remove yourself from the situation. At least, not without Falling Down.

There are a few of ‘traffic jams’ in my life. London is one of them. A recent Facebook chat made me realised that facebook is another. The cyclic stop / start samsara, the echo chamber of tribal opinion abutting the cacophony of a billion voices…

It turns out I can only tolerate a certain amount of ‘traffic jam time’ and maintain any kind of optimism, creativity, happiness, or compassion for my fellows.

Since right now I’m in a position where I can not change London, I’m only going to sit in the facebook jam for at most a few minutes per day, mainly to post on there as Sustaination.

For everyone who’s keen to say “at last / I told you so / phew now I can get back on facebook”, jolly well done.

But please don’t ‘like’ this post: it doesn’t make me in the least bit happy to do this. Relieved, yes, but happy, no.

It’s a personal failure that I’m choosing to take this action, because I love hearing your stories, and seeing all the great things everyone is up to. I find facebook a place for togetherness, support, connection, and delight; and I’m going to miss it.

See you in the real world,


Ed Dowding

Ed Dowding

Founder, strategist, writer, gadfly, TED talker, world-record holder, and (foolishly) reality-TV farmer. DOES: Innovation, Product, Advocacy THINKS: Regenerative Systems, Institution design, 300 year horizons

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