You May Find This Offensive

A man is dead. That is very sad. I am sure that the people who knew him, and loved him, and felt conflictedly ambivalent about him, are all devastated. But I am not sad because he sold me things and now he will not. Someone else is most definitely coming to sell me things. I only own one thing that he sold, and it is a pretty decent thing. It never changed my life. I don’t think his stuff was all that revolutionary. I think his attitude towards the public was often shitty, and the naming of a piece of technology after a feminine hygiene item was somewhat less than inspired. But apparently FB is engaged in group mourning, and because of this ‘new media’ and ‘age of technology’ there is very little I can do about opting out. Or disagreeing. Or saying, hey, you might be overstating the case there just a little bit? But because I am the type of person who actually cares about how my electronic communications are interpreted by those around me, I can’t just actually TYPE that shit. OMG. Seriously. Social media pariah!!

I think this has been building since 9/11. Never forget! Like that day that still lives in infamy? That day that no one born after 1985 even knows about? That day, which actually changed the course of history and the course of national identity and all sorts of things, including the life of my very own grandfather, that day is one to remember. This day, this awful awful day, was a day when lots of innocent people died, heroes lost their lives, and our country hit a slick spot on a downhill slide that we still haven’t shaken. I don’t feel ennobled by that day. I feel saddened, and mostly sickened, by what the day has come to mean in our popular discourse. I agreed with the Salon article that said the 10 year anniversary didn’t really matter because we’d never stopped grieving and using it as a justification for all sorts of ends. But it’s not the kind of thing that you can say on a social media platform, or at least I can’t say it there.

I guess what I’m saying, at 12:19 a.m. on a rough week night, is that I will be boycotting FB on days of national sentiment or cultural importance. Ha ha. No. I will be reading, and getting irritated, and feeling confused and gagged and disenfranchised. Because for all of our collective consciousness and hivemind and millions of ways to express ourselves, I still can’t say what I think for fear of what other people will think of me. Or for fear of what someone else will think when they unearth that sentiment years from now. Long ago in the days of Myspace, lo, so many moons ago, I started blogging in a very timid sort of way. And I got bold. I got bold about speaking my truth and practicing radical honesty and freeing myself from the straitjacket of perfectionism, which I love to bedazzle and worship every hour on the hour. I got stronger, and I needed it, because boy was the shitstorm ever coming for me. Now that the shitstorm has mostly passed, now that I once again (mostly) sleep through the night, what am I doing but trying to cut pieces of myself off so that I can fit back in that damn bedazzled jacket?

I think it’s time for a little more honesty. A lot more truth. Because I am tired of lying and covering and pretending and scrambling and hustling and trying so desperately to fit in. If this just offended the crap out of your RSS Feed, or whatever super-connected mega corporation software that delivers these words to you in a hypersymbiotic platform of the matrix – sorry. Go ahead and unfollow now.

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