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If Orange is, indeed, the new Black, then Swiping is the new Bi-Polar Manic Depressive Disorder. And spiritual malaise. For gay men. In their 30s. Named Tom. Who don’t go to the gym. But still go to the bar. And checks Grindr, Tinder, Facebook, and Badoo. All on the way to retrieving their souls. Like in this excerpt: I’m doing fine, thank you. Chatting with Hot Shaun on Grindr. He wants my cock, but I want to tell him that in the 50s, the TV in the living room was the still point of turning world. The magic eye. Or anchoring voice. It contained narratives that worked because they were narratives that worked. Maybe it first changed when NASA sent back images of our planet back in the 60s. They say this is when our perspective as a species shifted, when we could finally see ourselves as one interconnected thing. Feel less isolated. I call bullshit, and say this was the exact moment when Astronauts changed into Gods, because they were outside and above it all, and so we all became hot for power and to be Prime Movers, too. Lots of people cannot sit down and watch TV anymore. Cell phones are the new TV, but the old voice joins the new one. And in the new one, there are many. I am the worst. At the pub, I imagine there is a beer between us, but Hot Shaun cannot stay off his phone. Cannot look at me long enough to not feel like a God. For me to be seen. This book asks us to consider, with cell phone in hand, how the famous adage “Life imitates Art far more than Art imitates Life” might apply to modern connection. In what ways are we actually connecting to each other? To the past? And, ultimately, to ourselves? And, as the book romps from one diary entry to the next, the answers -- like reality itself -- manages to occasionally flicker and wink with something we might call insight, or perhaps even truth with a capital T. Follow (or watch) Tom from app to app, bar to bar -- even country to country -- through his virtual and “real” encounters with all walks of life, from everyday Leeds queens, to greedy shamans, to ancient Warlocks specializing in soul retrieval, to discovering the meaning of life, the origins of all things, the app to replace all dating apps, and a path for society to heal. And, like most great stories, it is fantastic and unbelievable, and altogether plausible. Call it a book. Or experimental writing. Call it a Facebook-style rant. Call it magic or folklore. Call it a testimony. Or whatever blows your hair back. But it needs to be read, by a lot of people.
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