Remember?

There are 635,013,559,599 possible hands in a game of bridge.

Random fact, but there you go. Here’s another: a scallop has 36 blue eyes. One more: it takes 492 seconds for sunlight to reach the Earth. Here’s a game to play: go onto Google and search up “random facts”. You’ll get some pretty cool stuff. Then see how much you can remember after reading them once, leaving for the bathroom, for example, and coming back to your computer. Comment how much you remembered, if you want (you can be anonymous), and my theory might just be confirmed. Or denied. Depends on how you look at it.

See, here’s the thing: in a day’s time, you won’t remember where you wrote your password because you learned it off by heart. You won’t remember that ten quid you left on your desk at work, because you’ll have assumed you lost it, or some such excuse. You won’t recall your password to a website you never use, because you don’t need to. But someone else might. That man who nudged you in the street earlier? He saw your password on your phone. The man who gave you the wrong change for your coffee at Starbucks? He got you to pay by card instead… and looked at your PIN. I’m not trying to scare you, I just want to make you aware. People forget about things that later destroy their lives as they know them. Not everyone’s like that – hardly anyone is, really. But some people are. You won’t remember things… but they will. And all to often, it’s not so that they can give your purse back to you, or remind you when your doctor’s appointment is. Sometimes, it’s the things we say online that expose us. “I hear you’re away next weekend, by the way?” Creepy, how the world can always tell what you’re doing… but it’s because you told them first. What we say online matters. What we say online can mean the difference between happiness… and fear.

Please note that the purpose of this is not to spread fear of the internet. Honestly, I think it’s very important that no one feels at all unsafe online or in the real world. Quick question, though – how long does it take for sunlight to reach the Earth?

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