I performed one of my little Facebook experiments a week or so ago and just got around to writing it now.
Part of me (and not my condition) is wrapping myself up in righteous indignation at what I see is hypocrisy and injustice. You know the early childhood studies that show kids have a strong sense of justice? And then the culture beats it out of them? Yeah, that didn’t happen to me. In fact, my sense of justice (warped as it is) became part of my asshole persona at times.
This year, I had a therapist literally throw me out of her office because I made the case that although that life isn’t fair, I didn’t understand why it had to be so damn unfair? And yes, I knew all about ‘just world theory’ going in. I never said I was sane, remember.
Anyway, I posted a string of outraged posts on various police shootings, capitalistic nightmares (think epi-pen) and just other instances of the blatant hypocrisy of modern American culture.
And, proving my point, my likes and comments went dead silent.
Put a cute kitty on FB and ‘friends’ you haven’t seen post on your comments in over a year come out of the woodwork to fawn over it.
I know what you’re thinking (seriously, I’m an empath . . . no, wait, is that bullshit?) – in the words of Cleavon Little in ‘Blazing Saddles,’ “what did you expect? “Welcome, sonny”? “Make yourself at home”? “Marry my daughter”?
Aside: Mel Brooks recently said that because of political correctness, ‘Blazing Saddles’ couldn’t be made today. He’s right. And that makes me very sad and is indicative of why movies today suck.
Anyway, yeah. It’s always the ‘everybody but you Keith.’ Now, I know that isn’t true and there are people out there as outraged as I am. I just don’t like them near me because I find them creepy. I’m an iconoclast (that’s a twenty-dollar word for ‘insufferable asshole’).
The other theory – people have absorbed enough stories of both employers and the government using Facebook as an electronic Stasi that they steer away from anything ‘controversial.’ Can’t really blame them. The ones who are really vociferous on FB know they are probably on ‘the list’ already and don’t care. Or they are agent provocateurs. See how the paranoid mind works?
And of course, there are people who just don’t want to get into fights on FB. They want to have a nice big happy family online where everyone just shares pictures of their cute doggies, kitties and perfect children. Pretty much in that order.
For so many of by FB friends it’s always sunny (not in Philadelphia, that shitpit) but on FB land where, to paraphrase Garrison Keillor, where all the women are posing with their tanned legs at the beach, the men are all the real estate agents of the month and their glowing, perfectly coiffed children, are going to Harvard.
As for me, I’m sitting on the couch in my dirty bathrobe, sporting a four-day growth of beard on my face, about to lose my job, filling my face with chocolate chip muffins from Costco, scratching myself and getting ready to take my morning meds and make my psychologist wish she had taken physics in college.
I would not say that I am an empty man or of one of T. S. Eliot’s ‘Hollow Men.’ I’m not only full of shit, but also copious levels of snark, bitterness, recriminations, fat cells, gas, regrets, bacteria and psych meds.
For some reason I feel like ending this epistle with a quote from Howard Beale, fictional newscaster in one of my favorite movies ‘Network:’
Good evening. Today is Wednesday, September the 24th, and this is my last broadcast. Yesterday I announced on this program that I was going to commit public suicide, admittedly an act of madness. Well, I’ll tell you what happened: I just ran out of bullshit. Am I still on the air? I really don’t know any other way to say it other than I just ran out of bullshit. Bullshit is all the reasons we give for living. And if we can’t think up any reasons of our own, we always have the God bullshit. We don’t know why we’re going through all this pointless pain, humiliation, decays, so there better be someone somewhere who does know. That’s the God bullshit. And then, there’s the noble man bullshit; that man is a noble creature that can order his own world; who needs God? Well, if there’s anybody out there that can look around this demented slaughterhouse of a world we live in and tell me that man is a noble creature, believe me: That man is full of bullshit. I don’t have anything going for me. I haven’t got any kids. And I was married for thirty-three years of shrill, shrieking fraud. So I don’t have any bullshit left. I just ran out of it, you see.