LEXINGTON — With burning eyes, an aching head, and a dissipating container of Halo Top ice cream, Abby Milton, 20, ventured deeper into the next ring of Internet oblivion via YouTube recommended videos. Having timed out of Netflix twice already, Milton spotted her own pitiful reflection out of the corner of her laptop screen, silently begging to be put out of its 3:30 a.m. misery in anticipation of an 8:30 a.m. economics elective.

“I don’t know what happened,” Milton whispered to herself, blankly staring at her calloused pointer finger and worn mousepad; “one video turned into five, then ten, and now I’m getting recommendations for stuff like ‘California quail.’”

The situation, Milton argues, is not all bad, though — referencing previously unheard-of Vines in inappropriate social situations proves “pretty rewarding,” as does a burgeoning folder of iPhone memes. Who needs human contact, she says, when a series of obscure references will serve the same purpose?

Looking forward, Milton will have to settle with an above-average knowledge of chiropractic methods, building a fire from forest brush and stone, and, of course, raising quail in the Pacific Northwest.

“It’s a simple life, sure, but it’s my life,” she said.

—Ford Carson ’18

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