The Wifi-free Wednesday is a brand new thing in our house. It has come into being as a consequence of online teen shenanigans and after an enforced period of zero internet reminded all of us how beautiful life can be without social friggin’ media.
It’s a simple plan. We do something together every Wednesday evening; go to the cinema, walk along the beach, eat a meal and none of us uses a device while we’re doing it. It’s not meant as a punishment but as a beacon of reconnection during the week when we attempt in a tiny way to hold back the psychological tug of the tech industry.
Our first Wifi-free Wednesday involved eating crisps and watching Ready Player One, a Spielberg film set in a future where the populace live with more gusto in a virtual world called OASIS than in the real one. The designer of OASIS has died and left a game within the virtual world, the winner of which gets to own and control OASIS forever. As a god-like gesture it’s rather laissez-faire. The baddies are a tech giant set on evil domination. The goodies are a disparate group of plucky kids with the dice loaded against them. The plucky kids win, share ownership and introduce some human-friendly changes one of which is to close OASIS on Tuesdays and Thursdays to encourage it’s real life citizens to rediscover real life relationships. Well, blow me over. It was an unplanned but fitting message for our first Wifi-free Wednesday and some weird synchronicity.
There was some initial resistance to Wifi-free Wednesday that fell away when it was actually fun. It propped up a heavy first week back to work and school after the holidays and put a spring in all our steps. We will continue our experiment and see if our little oasis improves as a result.