17 July 2015
Fishnet bodysuits on most people look pretty disgusting. Thongs riding up over the waistband of pants? Disgusting. Those guys in pouch-like swimsuits? Disgusting! No one really wants to see that stuff, still we gawk at the People of Walmart and other nasty pictures that come across our newsfeed on social media. Afterward we all exclaim about needing eye bleach.
It’s like rubbernecking a bad accident. You can’t turn away. Probably because it makes you feel superior, or at least lucky not to be the one in the picture. But the truth is, in a way you are the one in the picture. All of you—that’s right! I’m talking to you—have pumped at least one salacious item, whether graphic or written, into the perpetual machine that is The Interwebs.
Not long ago, few people had cell phones, and the ones who did wanted the rest of us to know how important they were. They conducted business in waiting rooms, walking down the street, on commuter trains. As roaming charges (remember those?) grew cheaper, they took calls from their spouses reminding them to pick up milk, or from girlfriends dumping them, or from someone inviting them to an awesome party. Their voices went up as they argued or bragged. They named names, they gave details, they said things people should never say aloud in public. We complained bitterly about them…until we too joined their ranks.
We might as well have put on a speedo, snapped a picture in the mirror with our 1.5 megapixel camera, and attached it in an email to our PC-using friends. (Mac users were out of luck due to non-compatibility.) But only one photo, because more than that would clog their inboxes.
Pulling such a stunt would have grossed out your mom and earned you a phone call on your way in to work, forcing you to have a loud argument on Metra about the merits of bikini waxing. The irony? These days, your mom posts pix of herself dancing with cabana boys in Cancun, and your senator tweets photos of his …well, you know.
Yep. You’re dreaming of the good old days, when Speedos were the grossest thing to
pop up on cross by your screen.
People, people, what has happened to decorum? Social media can be such a fabulous tool for personal connections or business, but somewhere along the way we began to let our hair down too much. We have taken our arguments from one-way, overheard rants to infinitely accessible public beat-downs in every forum. We “check-in” online and put up pix of our meals to make everyone jealous. We post about our exes, our infected big toes, our sexual escapades, even our bowel movements. We call strangers morons and accuse them of adhering to some evil political or religious agenda. These unholy subjects, fifty years ago barely whispered in the halls of our own homes, have become hourly headline news.
Everyone, everyone is seeking attention. The more outrageous the better. We are inundated with sound bites from every direction, each of which is competing for our fragile attention. It makes things difficult for those of us legitimately using the Interwebs to promote our work or our business. It’s all just more noise, and we must resort to more and yet more outrageous photos or clickbait titles or taglines to grab your attention. Sigurd’s the master, though I doubt he sets out to build our SEO with his titles. Based on our spiked stats, methinks we had a few frustrated wannabe chicken sexers check out OYOL last week.
Honestly, though, it’s time half the world put a cork in their yaps, stopped snapping photos of their wince-inducing outfits, and gave us all a nice breather. We could do without so much useless input. Besides, then y’all would have more time to read what I have to say. I promise I won’t show you any gross lycra photos.
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