Thursday, December 22, 2016

I Really, Really Don't Want To Know

I've become a Facebook cynic. When people post photos of their families being oh-so-happy, I'm the Scrooge that eye rolls. "My husband is the best! #breakfastinbed Love you sooo much." That translates to me as, "I'm insecure so I must let everyone know that I am totally enviable!" 
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Am I just being jealous? Perhaps. Yet my reactions are the same when it comes to vacation shots, and I'm a terrible traveler who dreams of her own bed. Seriously. The last time I went to Miami I packed so reluctantly I wondered if I was getting sick. 

Henry Alford's "Wish You Weren't There" researches yet-another oversharing situation.
While it’s fairly easy to categorize the photographically incontinent under the headlines Narcissistic and Insecure, or some combination thereof, the photo-posting folks may not have the same clarity about themselves. “People often don’t know that they’re the culprit,” said Marla Vannucci, a clinical psychologist who is an associate professor at Adler University.
In my tolerant moments I cringingly recall my early relationship with Facebook, where I felt obligated to post photos of my life. There wasn't really any thought behind it. FB is constantly begging and wheedling for me to share so they can blast me with targeted advertising, and my giddy young self succumbed. 

Yet the people posting aren't giddy young things anymore. I passed a mother and child on the street the other day; the mother had her phone up to snap a picture; the child threw her hands up to shield her face, wailing "NO!" The mother, flat-eyed with intent, grimly tapped away; she's taking the (unnecessary) picture. It was a mindless, and so thoughtless and inconsiderate, action. 

The Jabba in me was cheered by the news that the IRS now prowls through social media for proof of expensive lifestyles. "Can't pay your taxes? But you could pay for Disney World?" 

Hee hee.   

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