Leaving our world seems to be a focus for humanity (we call it that loosely) at the moment. We are either burying ourselves in ever more immersive, digital environments or setting sail for outer space.
And as we do so, we are getting more and more hurt by the experience(s).
We leave our world – the real one – for virtual reality environments and, it will come as no surprise, people are getting injured. People are contracting ‘gorilla arm,’ injuries to the arm caused by holding your arms up in the air for prolonged periods. One man broke his neck through repetitive movements that caused too much friction at its base.
Another injured himself in a virtual boxing match, was told by his doctor not to undertake any strenuous physical exercise.
And did it again, because he thought a virtual boxing match was not ‘physical.’
There is no cure, it seems, for stupidity.
This, of course, does not include the breakages of vases, windows, furniture and pets.
Leaving our world via the other exit is potentially even more harmful.
There is now so much space debris in orbit that we will inevitably start to see satellites and possibly space stations being wiped out by discarded pieces of rocket.
SpaceX is, supposedly, about to be sued because one of its spacecraft is about to crash into the moon.
But wait – no one owns the moon, so Mr Musk and anyone else can use it as a dump until such time someone claims it, which may take a while and a few bloody battles.
We are leaving our world in ever more inventive ways. The metaverse will potentially take us even further away from the real world, if such a joined up thing as ‘a’ metaverse actually emerges.
Perhaps we are bored. Perhaps we are bored with the stress of knowing that our planet is heating up and things are going to get scary. That is why we are leaving our world for other, more pleasant ones. The rich are heading for outer space, the normal people are heading for inner space.
The one thing they have in common is that people are getting out of here.
The other thing is that taking ever greater risks seems to be the way to do it in a cool way. Just look at social media and watch ever more physically fit people jump off buildings, cliffs and roofs, to land in balance, their hair perfectly in place. Then watch the unfit, probably drunk, people fall off those same buildings, cliffs and roofs and seriously hurt themselves as we chuckle into our dim sum.
The latest ‘game’ is a jetpack obstacle race. The entrants will be well trained, the machines checked down to the last nut. Those that follow will not be trained and will probably kill or seriously injure themselves.
If we are that bored and seriously considering leaving our world, perhaps more effort should be put into staying here and appreciating the real one.
It is a glorious place, if you stop and look and listen.
The video below is not for the faint-hearted: