I’m seeing social media addiction metastasize every day, and so are you. (Let me guess. You’re reading this post while checking your Facebook feed for the fifth time in as many minutes, aren’t you?) Look, I’m a Twitter user myself, but I don’t barrage it with pointless nonsense at all hours of the day. (I’ve got this blog for pointless nonsense. Ha-hey!)
Anyway, let me drop a few more sad examples.
I’ve known folks who check Facebook the instant they wake up in the morning. That’s not an exaggeration: their alarm goes off, and they reach for their phone to log in. And they’re actually proud of this? And of course it gets worse. I’ve seen people who simply cannot put their phones down even at important events like live music. I recently saw Slayer perform, and at least a quarter of the crowd watched the entire show through their phones’ screens. And that included people in the pit!
Few things are more annoying then people using their phones during mealtime, especially when they’re snapping pictures of their goddamned food. That’s why I always push an anti-cellphone policy when I’m out eating with friends and family; waiting for people to arrive and emergency situations are exempt from that rule, of course. During the meal, I enjoy the game where everyone puts their phones on vibrate, then stacks them on the side of the table. That way, if one goes off, you don’t know whose it is. First person to pick up their phone pays the bill for the whole table. That tends to teach folks a harsh lesson rather quickly.
Selfies? Don’t get me started. That shit is narcissism at its worst. Finally, there’s batshit insanity like making Facebook accounts for the unborn. That still makes me cringe. I think psychiatric care might be the only fix for that.
I firmly believe that social media has no place during real-world gatherings. If you’re talking with people in person, you don’t need to abruptly ignore them to yank out your phone and stare at tiny pictures and text or post updates. To quote Lewis Black: “If you’re describing what you’re doing, then you’re not doing it.” I usually call people out on such behavior when it’s rude and offensive, but the irony is that they often get offended, as if their own impolite actions are somehow the right thing to do. It’s profoundly depressing that social media addiction is the modern generation’s legacy.
I’ve waxed poetic and philosophical about all manner of Christmas and assorted winter holiday crap on this blog in the past. Occasionally, some of you readers have commented with your own traditions.
Damn it, that’s not good enough. In the spirit of the season, I demand more.
I want to hear about more traditions and celebrations you may have during the winter, even if you don’t celebrate Christmas (or any other specific holiday, for that matter.) What weird foods do you like? What obscure television specials or movies do you make it a point to watch in December? What musical numbers does your Uncle Bob butcher during his impromptu holiday karaoke sessions? Or do you just take the family out sledding, if you’re into that snowy shit?
I want answers, people, and you will give them to me right now. Comment away!
With the rise of “geek chic,” there’s been a proportionate rise in nerdy-themed weddings. You know, people dressing up as Star Wars characters and getting married by Obi-Wan Kenobi or some shit. Now, I personally don’t believe in marriage, but I think these themed weddings are a bad idea for a completely different reason.
When their future children (or maybe their current ones, who knows) see wedding photos of their parents dressed up as the cast of Firefly, it’s going to embarrass the shit out of them. Maybe not right away, but trust me, it’s coming. Before you sharpen your bat’leths and come after me with the expected boilerplate responses, let me deconstruct them right before your eyes.
The biggest counterpoint I hear is that people are raising their kids on geeky stuff, so they’ll automatically love the fact that their folks had a Lord of the Rings wedding or whatever. (Some have even included their existing children in these weddings, as would be expected.) That’s fine and dandy now…but think further down the road. Are you into all of the same stuff now as your parents were? I thought not. And just remember what it was like when you were a teenager. When these kids’ asshole classmates see pictures on Facebook of them dressed as Frodo at their parents’ wedding, even if it was years and years ago, they’re going to get one hell of a hard time at school. You can’t be there with them all day, so as strong-willed and resilient as you think your kids might be, trust me, it’s really easy to break under that kind of societal pressure.
Next point: what’s cool now may not be in ten years or more. Even timeless stuff like Star Wars, Star Trek, and Doctor Who doesn’t automatically gain a new audience with each family generation. For example, my father and I both enjoy Star Trek, but I don’t watch most of the other shows he enjoys, and vice versa. We’re all different people, remember.
My third point goes beyond the kids, and this one really stinks. Marriages, in the United States at least, have a failure rate of over fifty percent. That’s a majority, people. So imagine putting all sorts of time and effort into a wedding, and adding all of the geek-themed stuff on top of that…only to have it all come crashing down a few years later. (This recently happened to some acquaintances of mine, and it was not pretty.) Now you, your ex-spouse, and probably all of your guests are going to feel mighty awkward whenever they see whatever media your theme came from; it’s a painful reminder of a failed marriage.
The moral of the story is this: just settle down, and think things through. It’s one of the biggest and most important days of your life for both you and your family; leave the nerdy crap at home for a change. Most of your wedding guests probably don’t give a shit about that stuff, anyway.
Here’s another problem with my mental processes that I just cannot fathom. Whenever I’m offered the chance to go out and do something fun with my friends, such as movies, trips, et cetera…the first thing that comes to mind is a screaming “NO!” in the back of my brain.
Of course I almost always want to go. I’m just wondering why my subconscious default setting is an automatic dismissal. It makes absolutely no sense, and doesn’t do much for my sense of self-worth or self-respect.
I’ve been an introvert since I was a kid, but starting in high school and college, I really did my best to break out of that, and I’d like to think I succeeded. Maybe this weird brain behavior is a remnant of my introversion, but it seems to have started only relatively recently. What, was it taking a long nap or something?
Remember the Cross Effect? It’s my weird “super” power, though I’d much rather trade it for something cool like a power ring or invulnerability. Anyway, I just realized something the other day: I have a second power, possibly related to the first, that I’ve known about for years but never written about. This power is very simple: with no effort whatsoever, I can easily clear out crowded restaurants and bars.
No, I didn’t fart.
I first noticed it when I’d go out to breakfast with my family. We’d often go a very crowded diner, but as we were about halfway through our food, the place was maybe a quarter full. Weird. The first few times didn’t register, but it soon because a regular pattern. Then I noticed it happening when I was out with friends, so clearly I was the one causing this. And, in typical paranoid fashioned, I figured that I stank. But nope, the ol’ armpit smell check turned up nothing, and my friends also confirmed that I wasn’t giving off some rancid odor. (They aren’t the type of people to hold anything back, I might add.) I also asked if perhaps my annoying personality was driving people away, and those close to me also denied this. In fact, I make it a point to be as polite as possible when dining out, and to keep my voice down.
I guess this mutant power is rather convenient in that it allows my friends and family to easily enjoy their meals in peace without having to deal with nearby patrons being too loud or obnoxious. But it’s also really damned strange, as I can’t figure out why it happens. Maybe I’m exuding some kind of foul pheremones, undetectable by me and mine, but repulsive to strangers. Wasn’t there an X-Man who could do that?
Anyway, I suppose I’ll enjoy it as long as it’s useful. If a secondary mutation kicks in and just starts driving away humanity in general, then I’m in trouble.