Monday, March 7, 2016

A Monday Social Media Rant

I sort of hate social media.  I truly do.  It use to be OK.  It was a fun read.  A good way to keep up with friends and family.  But, somewhere alone the way, it went rouge.  Now, 90% of social media just enrages me.  I think it's only self-loathing that causes me to check in.  While people are always finding new and inventive ways to infuriate me with their on-line etiquette, here are a few of my favorites:     

1.   I Don't Need Daily Pictures of Your Kids.  This is where it all started for me --  people posting 15 pictures of their kids.  Every. Day.  I get it.  You have kids.  You think they're cool.  They're your crowning (and, in some cases, perhaps, only) achievement in life.  I'm happy for you.  Really; I am.  But get over yourself.  Have some self-awareness.  Recognize that your 1,500 closest personal friends on Facebook might not share your same interest in your kids.  Realize that maybe - just maybe -- some guy you went to high school with 20 years ago does not want to wake up . . . EVERY DAY . . . and see his Facebook wall full of your pictures of your kids.  And, no - I'm not talking about posting the occasional picture of your kid.  I actually appreciate those.  Nor am I talking about posting some pictures of your kid from some party/event/whatever.  I totally understand that.  I'm talking about posting pictures of Every. Goddamn. Thing. Your. Kid. Does.  I started eliminating these people years ago.  But, I've found them to be resilient.  They tend to be resourceful, [yo]u see.  One of their favorite techniques to ensure that you continue to see their pictures of their precious kids is to tag other people in their photos . . . people who are not, of course, actually in the picture.  This way, friends of their tagged friends can ALSO see pictures of their precious kids.  I once "unfriended" (or, perhaps I just "blocked") a "friend" for the offense of posting kid pictures; but we shared nine or ten mutual friends.  She would tag these other people in posts of her kids.  So, I was still waking up to 20 kid pictures a day.  And, I did not want to unfriend these other people; I liked them; they exercised solid Facebook etiquette; they did not deserve to be unfriended.  Ultimately, I found a way to get my point across.  I began posting pictures of random objects.  A car.  A tree.  A dwarf.  Each time, I tagged this person in the picture.  So, she'd wake up every morning with a picture of an ice-cream truck on her timeline and in her photos.  And, all of her 1,500 friends would wake up to a picture of her (well, an ice-cream truck to be more exact) on their timelines as well.  I think she got the point, because I have not seen a picture of here kids in several years.  Anyway, if  we use to be "friends," or I use to "follow," and I no longer do, now you know why.  

2.   Facebook is NOT a replacement for your phone / email.  This has been sending me on tilt for a few years now as well.  I don't need to log on to Facebook to see my wall filled with:  Tina Smith ---> John Smith: "Tonight is Thursday - Big Bang Theory!!!! Making Lasagna!  See you at home!!!"  Is this necessary?  Facebook is not a forum to send personal messages to friends, family, spouses, whomever.  You have a phone; use it; you have email; send one; you can text message; do it.  Hell, Facebook even has its own instant messenger for this very purpose.  Why do you think anyone else wants to see your inane messages to your sister on social media?  If you love your husband, good for you.  You prolly should.  Feel free to tell him over and over as much as you want until you reach the point he feels smothered and leaves you . . . BUT no one else needs, or wants, to know about it.  If you need attention from the 1,500 strangers that are your very best Facebook friends, then please, find another way to deal with your issues.  If  we use to be "friends," or I use to "follow," and I no longer do, now you know why.        

3.  Social media is not a pond for you to troll for attention.  "FML.  Not again!"  "Third day in a row!  Why does this keep happening?"  "Fingers crossed!"  "Pray warriors needed . . . please pray!"  Need attention much?  Do you really need a string of "Oh NO!  What's wrong?!?!?" or "Hope you are OK" or "Hang in there!" responses from your 1,500 friends?    If you've got something on your mind, just say it.  If you have a real issue or something you are going through, then pick up a phone; or send a text (see above).  But don't troll for attention.  It's a waste of everyone's time.  If you've made these types of posts, and we use to be "friends," or I use to "follow," and I no longer do, now you know why. 

4.  Hey Fatso, I don't need to see 20 videos of ways to make brownies.  My new favorite.  Every morning I wake up to 20 posts of people forwarding recipe videos.  "Looks delicious!!!"  "I'm going to try this!!!!"  "Looks soooo easy!"  Often times, this offense is combined with Offense No. 2 above: "Honey, we TOTALLY need to try this!!! [link to recipe video]."  Look.  The internet is a big place; with lots of information.  If I want to find a recipe, I'll search for it and find it on my own.  If you're hungry, grab some almonds.  Facebook was not designed to be a baking message board.  I don't need a wall full of easy dinner ideas every day.  If  we use to be "friends," or I use to "follow," and I no longer do, now you know why.  
5.  I don't need your inspiration.  "Always Love Your Mother, Because You Will Never Get Another."  Um.  Thanks.  I had no idea.  "Mary, help me to patiently endure the insults and the persecution directed toward me. Help me to forgive them as Christ forgave his tormentors." Um.  Well; OK then.  And, a recent personal favorite:  "What we DON'T say often speaks louder than what we do." Um. So, like, shouldn't you NOT post this on your wall?     If you find internet pictures marked with truisms, scripture, or some other Hallmark-style bullshit inspiring, good for you.  If you need this type of affirmation to motivate you, I'm sorry for your condition.  Either way, I don't need to see this on my Facebook wall.  If you come up with an original thought, fantastic.  Feel free to share.  I mean, I'll likely find it pathetic and lose respect for you; but, feel free to take your best shot.  But, the last thing I need is for you to regurgitate some trite bullshit that you find profound.  If you do this, you're likely an idiot; no need to broadcast it.  If  we use to be "friends," or I use to "follow," and I no longer do, now you know why. 
6. I don't need your politics or social agenda.  Closely related to No. 5 above.  You like Donald Trump.  Great.  You don't like Donald Trump. Great.  You read a story about Donald Trump.  Great.  You think it's unfair that Muslims are often tied to terrorism.  Great.  You think that Muslims should be banned from the country because most are terrorists.  Great.  SHUT! UP!  If you think your political thoughts are worth sharing, then you are probably too stupid to realize just how stupid you are.  Extra special shout out to the idiots out there re-posting those blatantly fabricated social justice stories . . . like the one about AirTran Flight 297.  You know, where the 11 Muslims practiced a "dry run" on a flight to Houston until brave passengers did what the airline refused to do and took care of business.  Um, think before you share some fake story that fake happened like 7 years ago.  If you shared 297 on your wall, there's a special strata of idiocy for you.  I have zero desire to see news stories that you are passionate about.  If it's possible, I have even LESS desire to see links to FAKE news stories that you feel passionate about.  If  we use to be "friends," or I use to "follow," and I no longer do, now you know why. 

7.  Posting spoilers.  Nowadays, who watches TV live?  There's On-Demand . . . . video streaming at your whim . . . Netflix . . . binge watching.  Personally, aside from sports, I hardly watch any "live" TV.  I get home from work late, and I go to sleep early.  When I get an hour or so during the week, I'll watch something on demand; or I'll catch up Friday night or over the weekend.  I Love . . . LOVE . . . people who spoil shit on Facebook or Twitter.  If you walked up to a random stranger on the street on a Monday morning and said, "Holy fuck! Do you believe they killed Jon Snow!?!?!?!?" you'd be a dick.  You're no less so if you tweet it out to your thirteen followers.  And, if you think you're being clever by posting something like, "OMG! Snow! W.T.F.," you're not.  I'm not an idiot. You're the idiot.  And you've just ruined it for me.  And, there's no reason for it.  The internet is not a contest to see who can post "breaking news" first.  You don't need to post every thought; feeling; emotion that crosses your brain.  Exercise some impulse control.  And, if you feel an uncontrollable need to, like, talk about what happened, get an actual friend.  If  we use to be "friends," or I use to "follow," and I no longer do, now you know why.  
8.  Please; once is enough.  And, finally, as if Mark Zuckerberg needed to constantly invent more ways to send me spiraling into rage, I present the "Share Your Memories" function.  I'll keep this quick: no one cared about your post the first time in 2012.  Trust this -- we give even LESS fuck the second time around.  Memories are in your head.  Please, keep them there.

End. Rant.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Best Laid Plans

Lately, Every. Day. Is. Torturous.  The alarm goes off at 5:30am.  I'm out the door around 6:15.  I get home between 8:00 and 9:00 pm.  Every. Day.  And, the hours in between generally suck.  Every. Day.  Thinking about summer, and vacation, keeps me going.  This week, I booked my annual Vegas trip.  June 3rd through 12th.  Venue: Signature.  And this trip is going to be different.  Inspired by last summer's treck through Badlands and Yellowstone, I'm planning to spend some time away from the strip.  I'm renting a car.  I've got an overnight hiking trip planned to Zion, Utah.  Also day trips to Red Rock, Valley of Fire and, perhaps, some others.  Nature in favor of monkey mash.  And pool time.  Lot's of it.  Yes, there will be gambling.  Hopefully, mainly, poker.  But, overall, I'm shooting for a different kind of Vegas adventure in 2016.

And now, back to the grind.