March 18, 2014
I was scrolling through pictures of my daughters on Facebook and I noticed several comments from friends that have died since the pictures were taken. How excruciatingly painful, yet wonderful, is that? The idea that we can still hold a small presence in someone’s life. One that can be seen by many. No longer are our ghosts confined to old photo albums, faded Christmas cards, or dusty corners of memory. True, it’s only bits of data, or several hundred pixels, but still it lurks and haunts our machines, catching us off guard with a forgotten comment or picture.
Do cyber confines preserve us longer than memory, or, is it only an illusion that allows us comfort until someone trips the circuit breaker?
The internet and its spastic child social media are wonderful communication tools. But, I have noticed over the last decade as chatrooms morphed into Facebook and Twitter, plus their smaller stepchildren like Pinterest, Goodreads, and IMDb, that everybody has an opinion on everything. Alright, cool, that’s nice to see, but I feel you should keep in mind the question: would you actually say the things you type to someone’s face?
Our world is entertainment fueled and addicted. Movies, TV, music, and even books still hold more import for everyday people than their real life relationships. Think, “Gee, I wish my boyfriend were more like So&SO.” Nothing wrong with that either as long as you realize he may be thinking the same of you – compromise.
Here’s the problem: with so many avenues for people to talk or “Geek out” over their favorite new entertainment, I have noticed a counterculture subgroup of people that hate what everybody likes, only because other people like it. Please, don’t do this. If you have to call me Nick i Am, then so be it. But, always try something before you say you hate it. Watch a movie more than halfway, watch a TV show past the pilot, read a couple hundred pages of a book, before you say “I do not like Green Eggs and Ham!”
I read Twilight, not for me, but I read it. I read Fifty Shades of Grey, not for me, but I read it. If there is a specific reason you don’t like something other than that other people do like it, then be specific in your criticism so the world will know you have your reasons and aren’t being a petulant toddler. Here’s an example: I read Kim Harrison’s The Hollows series, and enjoyed the first four novels, but as the series went the immature choices the main character Rachel makes time and again, her constant struggles with bisexuality and her daddy issues became too much, and I felt the character needed to grow more if the series were to continue to my tastes. Now, that does not make Kim’s major series a bad series. It means that for me as a reader I no longer enjoyed the work. But, you see how I gave legitimate reasons for no longer liking the books, and proof that I had indeed read them and not played the childish Green Eggs & Ham card?
When you badmouth a work of entertainment that you haven’t witnessed for yourself, you are only hurting and limiting yourself.