Stop the World and Let Me Off

(Pixabay photos)

Clinton, South Carolina, Thursday, November 8, 2018, 1:14 p.m.

By Monte Dutton

So much is going on that I can’t decide what to write. I’m suffering from information overload. I’m drowning. Either that or I’ve fallen and I can’t get up.

It’s impossible to keep up. With politics. With technology. With violence. With anger. Do this. Don’t do that. Can’t you read the signs?

It’s more difficult to have conversations. That’s why people text and post and tweet. I’m not sure whether lack of conversation leads to tweets or tweets lead to lack of conversation. Last night I ate out. All four people in the booth across from me were texting, regardless of age. I wonder if they were texting each other. That might work at a public library. Then again, someone nearby might text, Shhhhh.

I yearn for the insignificant day.

It would be nice to awaken briefly at 4 a.m., most likely because nature calls, discover, as usual, that I fell asleep with the TV on, and not learn that some nut has shot up a nightclub in California. The darkness of the room is ablaze with the flashing lights of police cars on the news.

Since the World Series ended, it’s been difficult to watch other sports. I half-watch everything. I haven’t seen a basketball bounce yet.

It’s almost as if everything else has become a sport I watch instead of actual sports. Elections are a sport. Politics is a sport. In fact, someone needs to come up with another term for people who hold public office because the world is making politicians of us all.

I watch the weather more, too. Twenty years ago I heard someone say The Weather Channel was MTV for old people. That was before a hurricane started rolling through the neighborhood every few weeks.

President Twitter is the political equivalent of marijuana. He causes short-term memory loss. I can’t watch coverage of the latest crisis without losing touch with the last one. Recently President Twitter couldn’t tell the truth when he was asked about telling the truth.

I’ll probably be tweeted over this. It’s okay. Social media is just freedom gone wild. It’s a crowded theater full of people yelling “fire!”

Before Tuesday’s elections, I knew that things would either get slightly worse or a lot worse. At the moment, I’m leaning toward the latter.


The Barrie Jarman Adventures (Gabe Whisnant photo)

If you become a patron of mine, you’re supporting writing like this as well as my mostly NASCAR blogs at If you’ve got a few bucks a month to spare, click here.

Another way I cobble out a living is with my books, a wide variety of which is available for sale here.

(Steven Novak cover)


The new novel, my eighth, is called Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.

Lightning in a Bottle is now available in an audio version, narrated by Jay Harper.


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