Irresistible distractions of a Google search

I’m drawing a fireplace mantle for this new project and I thought I’d like to punch up my drawing with a few details. So I do what I normally do. I search online images and find a few that work wonderfully. But I can’t just do that and move on to the next drawing, can I? Of course not. That would show discipline.

Creepy SantaNo, I have to focus on a black and white photo of a repulsive, zombie-like Santa with a child and a donkey. Text accompanying the image says, “10 Creepy Santas Whose Laps We Want…”, and now I have to know what’s after the dot-dot-dot and see all those creepy Santas. Obviously. Click. I’m looking at the column of photos. Oh, it’s as satisfying as I can imagine. Num num num num. I’m just eating up all the Santa creepiness. Delicious and ugly Santas. Underneath the last pic are suggestions of other time-wasting lists. “15 Celebrities With Physical Deformities.” Yep, I’m doing THAT now. There’s Seal, Damon Wayans, Ke$ha. Then I see Kate Bosworth, and I’m thinking, come on! Deformed?! Really? Differently coloured eyes constitute a deformity? Well, maybe the compiler of this list showed her editor the first draft without Kate Bosworth and was told to make it more sexy. I’m now completely consumed with imagined scenarios of the process by which this list is constructed. And I’m really not liking the imagined editor at this point, and want to stick up for the genius first draft.

Then I see Ashton Kutcher on the list of deformities. The accompanying text says he revealed his webbed toes on a BBC chat show hosted by Jonathan Ross. Straight to YouTube! And I type in “Ashton Kutcher Jonathon Ross”, and it autofills “webbed toes”. It AUTOFILLS webbed toes. A LOT of people have done this before me if it autofills webbed toes. In the video clip, Kutcher takes off his socks, puts his foot on the host’s desk and Jonathan Ross brings a little travel pair of scissors dramatically close to the webbed toes and…

Do you have to know what comes after the dot-dot-dot? Did you stop reading this to find out? I don’t blame you.

But what is this all for? That’s the state I’m now in. Embarrassed and self-critical for giving in to such pointless distraction.

Alright, I’m done with the momentary self-pity. Time to regroup, and on to my next drawing. I need an image of a Victorian bicycle. Over to Google I go and…what’s that? A dog riding a bicycle? And there are videos of other animals peddling little bikes? Better see what YouTube has to say about that…

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Dwellers of Lurching Swill by Dan Holst Soelberg


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