I’m not myself on Facebook. There, I said it. But then, no one really is. Social media isn’t really us, is it? Like every other social media application, Facebook profiles are the drop-down selection, check-the-box version of us. The self-serving, digital distortion we choose to present to other drop-down, check-the-box digital distortions.
If you’ve known me in person for any length of time, you know me to be much more sarcastic and pessimistic than I ever am online. On Facebook I’m the nicer version of me. The cocktail party me. The polite me. The watered-down, best-behavior, heavily redacted me. I can’t be the real me, of course, primarily because Facebook has become, sadly, an amplification tool for hate speech. One “wrong” word can trigger an avalanche of judgement from the countless trolls (Left, Right, Christian, Atheist, 2nd amendment activists, anti-2nd amendment activists, and so on) who live to use the safety and anonymity of social media to scream self-righteous judgement from the mountaintops. I don’t fear getting crushed by that avalanche. I simply view it as a monumental waste of time and energy. No one ever wins or loses an argument on Facebook. No one ever changes an opinion with an I’ll-set-this-S.O.B.-straight post. So what’s the point of clogging up my news feed with bullshit?
So maybe you’re feeling a bit ripped off, a bit under-served. Well, you have been, I’m sorry to say. But in the interest of I’m-not-quite-sure-what, I thought I’d jot down a few things that’ll give you some insights into the real me. The one you’d get to know if you had beers with me or went to school with me or worked with me. Call it the NSFF (not safe for Facebook) list of my beliefs / thoughts / opinions. Enjoy.
- Woody Allen’s personal life grosses me out, but I love his movies.
- With very few exceptions, most military science fiction is the literary equivalent of a mindless Bruckheimer action movie.
- Private gun ownership should not exist. The average person is far too stupid and irresponsible to own a firearm.
- I have several litmus tests I use to assess people. This is wrong and I know it, but I still do it all the same. Here are a few: your opinion of Sarah Palin, your opinion of the movie “300”, what you read, how much you mention God.
- The death penalty is stupid. I’m not a libertarian, but the idea that the state can get the death sentence right every time is ludicrous. The state shouldn’t have this power.
- The jury system is crazy. Do I really want twelve semi-educated, easily duped, reality TV-watchers deciding my fate? No fucking way.
- Ditto direct democracy. See above point.
- I could never be a starving artist. I’m too bourgeois, first of all (a shameful admission). But also I’m too frightened of the nightmare of being poor in this country.
- George Lucas can’t write, and Star Wars Episodes 1-3 should be a business case in MBA textbooks. Those 3 movies represent how horribly wrong things can go when a rich, powerful person surrounds himself with those whose livelihoods depend on them agreeing with every idea the boss has, no matter how ridiculous.
- I still can’t wrap my head around how we’ve arrived at a point in this country where a contemporary P.T. Barnum is a hair’s breath away from occupying the White House. We are a nation of rubes.
- In my personal experience, there’s a nearly 100% correlation between how much someone talks about religion and how much of an intolerant, bigoted asshole they are.
Surprised? Angry? Disappointed? Don’t worry. If you don’t think you’d like the person who wrote these words, you can always check out the Facebook David. I hear he’s a lot nicer.