Day: June 4, 2015

Irksome Internet

The Internet has been getting on my nerves lately.

There are several blogs that I often read but from which I will have to give a break, perhaps indefinitely.  On an intellectual level, kudos to the writers; I wish them well, and I hope for their continued success.

Viscerally, I mostly just want to punch them in the face. I just cannot take all the perfection and all the thoughtfulness and all the balance.

It goes something like this.

You know this thing that the society says women can’t have or usually don’t have?
Well, I have no idea where that comes from, because I totally have it in oodles. I have never even had a problem with getting it. My balance has never been better; here’s a pic of all the balance. 

I have been trying to figure out what irritates me in such posts, because I agree that women get put down a lot and I should not be contributing to the putting down, so I don’t. But the grumpiness remains, and I think it’s probably the same thing that irritates me about some of my perfect colleagues, male or female: nobody is that perfect, and the fact that someone wants me to play that game where we both pretend they are flawless is an insult to my intelligence and a waste of both our time.

I read a lot of blogs by professional women, and I don’t care what they write about, as long as they sound like actual real people. What that means, I suppose, is that I can recognize my own life in their writing or that I can somehow identify with what they go through. I don’t mean to imply that people have to bitch and moan and vent. Some people are more into venting than others. But I suppose I want to see some undoctored emotion, something genuine — joy, pain, anger, anguish, laughter, snark, something.

I simply cannot connect with the writers whose every post seems like a thinly veiled ode to their perfect selves. I don’t know if that’s on purpose, or if they are unusually fortunate/privileged/detached/oblivious, or if it’s a branding thing, or yet another US regional thing that I don’t understand, but I am really developing a deep distaste for blogs that are supposed to be kinda-sorta personal, but really aren’t; instead, what they present is a highly manicured persona. I also can’t identify with the writers (perhaps that’s just a failure of imagination on my part) who present their personal lives as such an antiseptic utopia that even the nominally chaotic parts get bleached into blandness, with prose that is completely devoid of sharp or rough edges, hinting that even the chaos is an endearing part of their masterful plan.

Tangentially related, these days everyone seems to have a Twitter feed and it’s a strange, strange land. Clearly, many people spend a lot of time on Twitter and I am sure they find it fun or useful or something, but to me it seems completely terrifying. I find the people who are active on Twitter to be like the explorers venturing into uncharted jungles that are populated by cannibalistic tribes — it seems to be only a matter of time before you get eaten alive, so I can’t seem to understand why anyone would subject themselves to it.

Sometimes I think I would like people more without the Internet.