Rob Horning ruminates on the London conference of boredom enthusiasts held this past December:

It sounds like this was less about boredom than an elaborate parody of self-obsession and connoisseurship, that is, about things we fail to find boring about ourselves that bore everyone else. It sounds pretty hilarious, and I imagine the pressure to keep it all deadpan made it more so. It also seems like more evidence that boredom is situational, relational; it doesn’t adhere in subject matter but in relationships. I am almost never bored when alone, probably because I find myself endlessly fascinating but also because I can ricochet between any number of distractions without any negotiation or warning. I don’t have to justify what I am preoccupied with in any given moment. The presence of others conjures the boredom of compromise.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.