The New Way Social Media is Ruining My Life
I’m getting a different perspective on Twitter. Maybe it was not being on it when I was in Mexico recently, but I see it in a new light. I see these trending topics and they’re things that make me mad and I want to say something. Things I wouldn’t otherwise know about. Things that are not remotely worth the energy of my focus OR my outrage.
Like people getting bent over Kim Kardashian’s new body makeup, saying no one should feel they need to cover their whole body. No one is saying you need to cover your whole body. They’re missing the fact that there are people who have things they want to cover up. It’s like they’re being deliberately obtuse so they can have something to say and whine about and get in arguments with people over. They seem to go out of their way to not get their detractor’s points and instead focus on the fact they were challenged at all. Then they cry “bully!” when really, it sounds a hell of a lot more like “victim.”
All this faux outrage. It’s not even faux, it’s real outrage, but it’s over the stupidest shit. Shit you wouldn’t know or care about if Twitter didn’t tell you.
Again, back to Kim K. She launched a line of shapewear she named Kimono. Cool. Her name is Kim, it must be a play on that somehow. Right on. Next! But oh no, Twitter had to have a field day with the idiotic notion that it’s cultural appropriation and disrespectful. As if some reality TV show star has the power to diminish or devalue the sacredness or importance of the Japanese kimono.
By throwing a hissy fit you’re GIVING HER that power. YOU are GIVING her that power. You can actually CHOOSE to not be offended by stupid shit. Kim K’s underwear poses no threat to the century’s old kimono. Not unless you let it.
I don’t need that.
I don’t need to let myself care about things Twitter says people are caring about.
So a gender neutral person’s mom decided to call them Baby Goat. Why is this revolutionary? A baby goat is a kid. I get it. Sesame Street sang that to me when I was a… kid. Cool, Go Team for them, but why is this news? Is the news really more that their mom accepted them instead of disowned them? And why is even that news? Neither is that interesting, and certainly not viral news worthy.
Her mom should accept her. I’d rather treat this like it’s an everyday fact instead of rare and remarkable. It’s like celebrating single dads who actually pay child support or raise their kids alone. Yep, that’s what they should be doing. Why are we acting like they’re doing something heroic? They’re doing their job.
I’m tired of celebrating ordinary things as extraordinary. We need to get hobbies.
My brother lost his cat and got him back two weeks later, and from 500 miles away, and I didn’t think of it as a news story. Not until I saw a similar story go viral did it dawn on me that I could exploit his story.
See that? Exploit, not share. Get attention, not share.
Maybe that doesn’t make me the best investigative journalist, maybe it’s opening my mind to obvious writing opportunities, but bottom line is, this was a story that happened to my family. That’s it! My first instinct wasn’t to make sure the whole world knew how cool I was. (?)
So why am I inviting aggravation into my life? Why am I draining my creative energy choosing to go down these trivial rabbit holes? Especially now that there’s an algorithm that determines what’s popular instead of actual interaction. It makes the sting of no likes or comments burn a little more.
It’s just another twist of the Rubik’s Cube of distraction that’s easier to get lost in than, say, write or clean or do all that self-work I only focus on for an hour a week with my therapist. It’s glittery and I’m a magpie. Getting outraged about things, or even outraged that people are outraged, feels important and productive when, by and large, it’s neither.
Originally, social media was only ruining my life by making me compare myself and my accomplishments to those doing infinitely better than me, creating a riptide of self-doubt and anxiety, cascading into a cozy depression. Now I can add getting caught up in faux outrage over trivial tedium to the arsenal.