Great article in WSJ
ST. ANDREWS, Scotland—Scientists have been arguing for years about the starting point for the Anthropocene, the unofficial epoch when humans really began having an impact on how the world looks.
Some say it was with the agrarian revolution when forests were cleared for farmland. Or with the first nuclear tests in the 1940s.
Do you dig?
Others say it began when we first started digging holes. Sometimes deep. Sometimes not. Sometimes for no particular reason at all.
“It’s just relaxing,” said Charlie Mone, a student here in this college town on Scotland’s east coast, shovel in hand and a pit on the beach already taking shape behind him on a recent Saturday afternoon.
He first got into digging holes during a holiday with his friends in the Canary Islands during the fall break last year. “We were there on the beach and we thought, ‘Well, what else are you going to do?’ ” he said. “So we started to dig.”
When Mr. Mone got back to Scotland, he kept going and found that other people wanted to join in. Every couple of weeks or so he now cycles across town with a bag full of shovels and they see how far they can dig before the tide comes in or the passing squalls get too much.
People around the world have discovered the joy of digging holes. TikTok is peppered with people showing the holes they’ve dug, often five or more feet deep. The video clips they upload often involve men—sometimes students on spring break—stripping to their waists and putting their backs into one physical, real-world thing for an extended period.
Artists and scientists praise the benefits of digging holes for the raw focus it provides in a world full of distractions.
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