I’m no grammarologist….the evidence is overwhelming. But now that people are communicating more than ever over social media sites and everyone broadcasts their opinions in 140 characters or less, I’m left to wonder if emphasis and emotion triumph over common sense. Of course, the answer is yes, but I have these lingering questions:
- Why do you type in all caps? In the distant past (2002) that was meant as a form of shouting. You did something stupid (broadcast pictures of your boss making out with the entire carpool) and the angry response came in the form of an all capital letter tirade. It usually included the words “YOU’RE FIRED!” Now, I think people are trying to show their excitement, but really, it just comes across as a screeching, desperate plea for Ritalin.
- Along the same lines, I wonder why you feel the need to utilize more than one exclamation point, when maybe even one was too many. I know you’re excited that you’re favorite band is coming to town, or there’s a tweetup going on down at the coffee shop, but using it all the time? Please!!!!!
- Boosters. Back in English 101 you would’ve qualified for a public caning had you not cited sources when you were directly quoting someone else. And I mean a direct boost, not a familiar/common saying (Yeah, you, Copper). So why is it now no big deal to steal the wit of someone on Twitter and make it your Facebook status without even some gratuitous quote marks? To make matters worse, when people comment on “your” funny take, you’re not even saying that you lifted it….you’re silently taking credit. Dirty pool, that’s what that is. And guess what? When we meet up in person, and it’s obvious from the vanilla banter that those status updates were not of your own creation? It totally comes across.
- Why don’t you go see a doctor? You’re clearly almost dead; your past 16 updates have focused on your migraine/flu symptoms/ingrown toenail. I get it, we all get it….you need some sympathy and, in the words of my father “a reeeeeal swift kick in de ass.” Save the details of your hypochondria for a blog post, which is clearly a better medium for laying out all the gory details of your latest sore throat. I should know, I do it all the time.
- When you post pictures of your meal, you’re committing the social media equivalent of saying “I have nothing to say. So here, look at my food, why don’t you?” By now, it’s patently obvious that every single person on the internet is a better cook than I, so for the love of Cap’n Crunch stop showing me your braised ribs in duck reduction sauce, or I’m going to start posting pictures of my various, award winning toast creations. I realize there’s no question here, but it seemed like the right place to lodge the complaint.
- Why must you lambaste your obnoxious teen publicly? I realize, there’s no shortage of material out there that he/she is providing you to give reason for pulling out your hair/drinking at 9 am./taking up a prescription medication abuse hobby, but give the kid just a little break. Remember when we were teens? When our parents lectured us on the evils of drink with a glass of Chardonnay in hand, which only drove us into the arms of Pabst Blue Ribbon? Yeah, it’s still the same. So cut the kid some slack, because believe me, when you bitch about him/her online, they’ve not only read it, they’re busy ordering your credit rating destroyed by all their way-smarter-than-us-technologically friends. And subscribing to porn in your name.
- And lastly, how does re-posting religious proclamations/love for a nurse/appreciation for your nanny as your status make any sense? In the same manner that using a cartoon character as your profile picture won’t stop child abuse/cattle rustling/mesothelioma, your status update is YOURS, treat it as such, and not as a tool of guilty peer pressure. Trust me, no one thinks you’re FOR a bad cause if you don’t hop on the train, unless, of course, we’re dealing with zombies – that’s a game changer.
ps- I still love you, but I’ll completely understand if you recognize yourself in any of these situations and promptly unfriend, unfollow, or simply send a piece of hate mail in all caps with lots of exclamation points.