Saturday, March 16, 2013

New Ways Facebook, and the World in General, Get Me Down

Sometimes the world we live in gets me down in the strangest and most annoying ways.  The same stuff just hammers at me daily and wears out my brain.
I’m on Facebook a lot less these days, so I no longer do Irksome Facebook Posts of the Week, but whenever I do go on Facebook and see the same stuff all of the time, it’s going to make its way on to my blog so I can say exactly what I think is wrong with it.  
Here is my current list of things that get under my skin, rub me the wrong way, and make me wonder how exactly I’m going to deal with humanity for the next 40-50 years.  Some of it is Facebook based, but some of it is just about everything in the world.
1.  Zombies - Zombies are the new vampires.  Hollywood is coming out of one rut only to fall right into another.  Granted vampires, mobsters, and werewolves still want to hang around.  The latest craze seems to be making over and modernizing classic fairy tales (rather than doing something completely different and writing something original). 

What is it about the undead anyway?  Is this how we satisfy our fantasies of immortality?  I know we only get one shot on this earth, but I think if being a zombie/werewolf/vampire were my only choices for a second chance, I’d rather stay dead.

2.       Referring to a pregnant woman’s belly as a “baby bump” – It almost seems demeaning and dehumanizing.  You’re reducing developing life to something akin to a lump in the road.  Or maybe I just bristle at it because it’s so overused.  I suppose it sounds cuter than “sub-dermal developing fetus” – but just barely.

3.       Legos – One would think I’d be happy that kids are turning to low-tech, classic toys.  I suppose in some ways I am.  I just don’t understand how Legos have taken over the toy world and have become this strange obsession with both kids and adults.  Is there anything people won’t try to build out of Legos?  Does building the Eiffel Tower out of Legos improve upon the original?  I don’t know if it can be said of remaking the entirety of Les Miserables in blocky Lego figures.

Maybe I’m just bitter.  I could never build anything decent out of Legos when I was a kid.  I’d pile the blocks on top of each other trying to figure out how to make a house or car, and always became frustrated and give up.  I could never build anything out of Legos that looked like anything but a big chunk of plastic blocks. 

Then again today’s Lego sets seem to be pre-fabricated building sets complete with exactly what you need to make a particular structure and explicit instructions on how to do so.  That would make things easier for construction-challenged kids like me, but it also kind of defeats the purpose, no?

I’m also sick of the “stepping on Legos” memes.  Okay.  I get it.  Stepping on Legos hurts.  There is a cure for that.  Don’t leave them on the floor.  Can we move on?

4.       Unfortunately, the “Keep Calm” memes won’t die.  Just when I think they’re fading away, I see another 10 of them. 

Even if they are fading a bit, a new annoying meme has taken their place.  Now I am constantly bombarded with the meme of, “I may not always _____, but when I do it’s always____.”  Thank you Dos Equis beer for making my life that much more miserable with your ad campaign that started it all. 

I don’t ever drink beer, but if I did, it wouldn’t be Dos Equis thanks to this commercial.

5.       That stupid FBI “hammer” meme.  - How many people do you know that own one of the controversy-causing rifles that are so actively discussed online?  How many people do you know that own hammers?   Hmmm…it’s as I thought.  Did you know I’m more likely to break my leg in a horseback riding accident than I am in a ski accident?  Total number of death by all firearms (including the controversial ones and the more common ones) is far larger that death by hammers.

Stop picking on hammers anyway.  It’s all blunt objects and not just hammers.  Get it right.  Look, if I plan to kill my husband, I’m going to do it properly and use a rolling pin!

(Gun enthusiasts, please hold your comments and your fresh new barrage of stats from The Weekly Standard/World Net Daily/Drudge Report/Breitbart/etc..  You rarely ever do much to advance your cause, as I’m sure you feel the same about me.  I agree to disagree. Picking on my post will change nothing in the world.  Go lobby Congress.)

6.       Some memes really depress me.  Every time I’m on Facebook someone posts some picture of a dog in an animal shelter talking about how miserable he is and how he wants a home, but no one will give him one. 

I also see pretty regularly friends posting photos and stories of their new purebred puppies. 

I realize that no matter how many sad dog memes, weepy Sarah McLachlan commercials, and numerous adoption drives, most homeless dogs will live short, miserable lives in shelters and die.  Everyone thinks someone should adopt a dog, but hardly anyone wants a shelter dog themselves (or a shelter cat who is past kittenhood).  

(While I'm at it, why don't I have a rescue horse?   I have two registered ponies, one of which is a rare breed that was deliberately sought out.  Jenna is as close as it comes since she was a horse no one really wanted, but she wasn't destined for the kill pens.  I'm afraid I can't handle a rescue horse? Do I assume all rescues are problem horses?  Do I not have access to good trainers who could help me?  Why am I not rescuing horses?)

7.   The glorification of alcohol I see these days really scares me.  Everyone wants to talk about drinking and how they intend to drink and how much they drank.  People really are centering their lives and their sense of well-being around alcohol.  What is so frightening is that I keep seeing statistics about the rise of alcoholism among women.  For some women it's trying to live the Sex and the City lifestyle of going out to bars and drinking multiple cocktails all night.  For older women it seems that every time their children act up, every time their husbands act like oafs,  they need a glass of wine.  It seems everything has to be done with a glass of wine.  

Maybe these posts are exaggerations.  I'm not immune to the "I need a drink" Facebook post.  Anyone who knows me knows that's often just for show.  I don't drink that much and most of the time I only drink on weekends.  Despite alcohol's reputation as a sleep aid, it can make one fall asleep faster, but drastically reduces the quality of sleep and good quality sleep is something a chronic insomniac needs.

One reason I am a very moderate drinker is that I never wanted to be the type of person who "needed" alcohol to relax and unwind, or needed alcohol to enjoy an activity.  It's the same way I have worked very hard not to be someone who depends on caffeine to feel awake and alert.  Good sleep, exercise, and good nutrition take care of both our ability to relax and our ability to function while awake.  Our bodies know what to do without us having to constantly override their instincts with chemicals and bad food.   

But enough about my drinking habits.  I still worry about my friends, especially those who may have struggled with alcohol in the past.  When someone says, "I can't give up drinking for Lent," I think it's time that person examines if religious devotion isn't their worst problem.  I'm really afraid for some people.  I feel like asking, "Could you stop if you had to?"

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