The heartbreak of oversharing (column)
While the nation sleeps, a virulent epidemic snakes across our width and breadth like a twisting toxic tornado. Every day, the tragic sufferers of this dreaded disease stagger dazedly down streets walking into poles and Armenians and through glass doors, oblivious to all around them. Often wandering into the path of oncoming traffic. Many times, they are the traffic that is oncoming.
Of course we’re talking about the virulent pestilence that is … oversharing. It’s a communicable condition commonly mischaracterized as communication. These pitiable self-absorbed social media casualties are easy to spot with their bowed heads and marked tendency to stare fixedly into their laps, faces bathed in an eerie glow and furiously twitching their thumbs. At least we hope that’s what’s going on.
The harrowing evidence of the heartbreak of oversharing has become all too familiar. Scattered blooms of brilliance in darkened theaters. Blurry photos of a runny portabella mushroom parmesan risotto. Noble pets forced to pose in demeaning holiday-themed costumes.
Indiscriminate poking. Inane formulas designed to derive stripper names. Overly detailed records of various body fluid eliminations. The online community is a voracious beast that requires constant feeding and that gorging has created a chorus of cries for validation the rest of us neither need to know about nor care to witness.
Socrates opined that “an unexamined life is not worth living” but the Greek philosopher may be forgiven for living 24 centuries before our mass migration to Twitterville and Facebooklandia; blissfully unaware of the grisly possibilities of the far end of the examination stick. Hashtag egomania.
Yeah, yeah, yeah. Lines to new movie openings are long and slow. That revelation does not rate any kind of a thumb-up or down. You spotted a Canadian squirrel — terrific. We will alert Ottawa. Riding on buses during morning rush hour can get crowded. What next? Blue sky? Sand on a beach? Oh, goodie. A picture of sand on a beach below a blue sky. Yes, that looks like an awesome Southern Comfort Old Fashioned Sweet. But unless you’re bringing back a sip, no one is going to like it or share it or retweet it. Deal with it.
And why is it the same folks who complain about NSA surveillance insist on chronicling their every nose pick for the whole world to see? Quit talking about going to get some milk at the corner store and actually do it and then shut up about it, dumbass.
And you should be aware that if you hit me with that selfie stick one more time, your upwards-of-70 followers are going to be treated to a dedicated stream of an extreme close up of your large intestine. Friends don’t let friends post confirmation of them acting like idiots.
We haven’t even addressed the issue of drunk posting, a cutting-edge form of social and career sabotage. Future employers don’t want to be able to access highlights of the bachelor party that went awry. Good rule of thumb — no nighttime photos.
So, please, people. Only you can stamp out oversharing, a self-inflicted social disease that no antibiotic can cure. Perhaps someday, a solar flare or electromagnetic pulse will come and wash away all our juvenile posts and we will be forced to actually talk to one another. Again. Perish the thought.
Will Durst is an award- winning, nationally acclaimed political comic. Go to willdurst.com to find about about his new one-man show “BoomeRaging: From LSD to OMG,” and info about the San Francisco premier of the documentary film “3 Still Standing,” @ the Marines Memorial Theater.
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