I was suckered in, like many others, by Pinterest’s proverbial flashing lights and spinning wheels, by which I mean its pictures of things more beautiful than anything I could ever hope to have in my own house. The beauty of it was simple: if I pinned these photos to some kind of public space wherein others could see what good taste I had, and then never invited any of those people to my actual house, I could maintain a fairly healthy illusion that my pinboard was a reflection of my proper, beautiful life.

There are two major issues I can see with this:

1. If I have time to pin all these things, I probably have time to have an actual, legitimately beautiful life

and

2. No one cares if I have an actual, legitimately beautiful life

My Pinned Kitchen was white and clean and had a Kitchenaid mixer and it smelled equally of sea breezes and mountain air and there were definitely no dogs dropping their fucking filthy hair everywhere.

My Pinned Study had a long table with many ideas written on handmade paper and a floor to ceiling window that overlooked all the streets of Paris and definitely didn’t have chip packets and toner stains everywhere.

I had pinned breakfasts and pinned desserts and pinned hobbies and pinned careers and pinned families.

I had pinned about 50 things before I realised that I was actually browsing the web to find things to pin, rather than browsing the web because that’s a normal part of my day and then pinning them to share with a waiting audience. I was using Pinterest in reverse, pretending that my life was so genuinely fabulous that I couldn’t help but stumble cross glorious kitchens and gorgeous food and everything is just so relaxing in my life.

In reality, I was frantically clicking everywhere, visiting blogs that I knew would have beautiful things on them that I could pin despite having no real opinion of them. I was visiting other people’s boards and just repinning their entire lives because they were more beautiful than mine.

Then I realised.

I pinned a photo of my own breakfast.

I pinned a photo of my own dog.

I pinned a photo of my own study.

It looked pretty good, really. It wasn’t quite the pages of Gourmet Traveller or Vogue Living, but it wasn’t terrible. I pinned a few more things from my real, slightly less beautiful life.

And then I stopped pinning, and went and participated in it* instead.

* wrote this post