In Grayson Perry’s All Man, the artist interviews an MMA fighter in the north-east of England who describes the joy he takes in fighting:
The second I walk through them doors to the second I walk out, it’s heaven in here. It’s heaven. All your problems go away. The second you walk out the door, they’re back. Your problems are back.
This is an experience that fascinates me: immersion in a task, the contraction of temporal horizons, opens up the possibilities of profound pleasures (those intrinsic to the activity at hand) and distance from sources of worry and anxiety (the deliberations sparked by the broader context of your life).
This is what I describe generically as triaging: something that can be deliberately embraced, inculcated as a pragmatic response to a context or as some combination of the two. The overarching aim of my current book is to develop a moral psychology of triaging, grounded in an analysis of the socio-cultural conditions of digital capitalism.