When people run in circles, it’s a very, very mad world.
I like coming to Starbucks not because I think it’s a great place to clear your thoughts and be productive. But because it’s so cliche. Even as I sit here, I’m listening to two women talk about women they know. I don’t know shit about these women but $10 say they’re married and unhappy about it, despite being told repeatedly over the course of their lifetime, that happiness is tied to the idea of a good husband, having children, and living happily ever after.
This setting is interesting. As I listen to them gossiping about other women, I’m hearing Mad World play over the speakers, and I’m wondering too… when people run around in these circles, it must be a very mad world. Why is the unhappiness of others so important to your validation of happiness? Is this a measure of where you stand? What you have accomplished? I wonder if we all stopped using social media for a few weeks, what kinds of interactions we would have with each other.
I’d like to see the impact social media has had on the lense through which we see things. I can’t help but think of something my girlfriend said to me, “we broadcast too much of our lives”. And it’s true.
I just had the sides of my head shaved at the salon I go to, and as I sat there paying someone to take hair off my head, I thought to myself… eww, your ego, girl. We’re kind of trapped though. I think sometimes looking “attractive” can affect everything from not getting a job to not having friends to not looking “trustworthy”. A person’s image still invokes an opinion, negative, positive, whatever. Someone wearing designer goods may be perceived as materialistic. Or perhaps that’s just their way of expressing themselves, might be an interest, might be a part of their job description, maybe they’re just wearing those labels for the hell of it. After all, it’s their choice.
I’d argue, is it really a choice though? We all think about, whether consciously or subconsciously on some level, about our appearance. Our image. We think about what we post on social media (sometimes), but I think generally with the intent to show that our lives are at a certain level of contentment. But then, there are the extremes. I just saw what Justin Bieber had posted on his instagram account a picture of what he got for Christmas. It was a private plane. An. Airplane. A. Private. Jet. The instagram account, the twitter account… is it really a choice? Even for those who have long protested for privacy. But how many celebrities interact on social media in one way or another now? For musicians / actors, I think it’s just as important to put those images out there. “Interact with your fans; give them the impression of how “personal” the interaction is. And it works. It wasn’t that long ago that that kind of information wasn’t presented to the world unless it was through Entertainment Television or celebrity magazines. Now, you’ve got TMZ as a major network viewed by millions of people for “news”. How many employees at TMZ are paid to stalk endless celebrity instagrams/twitters/facebook pages/etc, to only regurgitate that information to the masses? “Breaking news: Justin Bieber gifted private plane for Christmas; picture taken from personal instagram”. Yo, it’s scary. Scary times, man.
And I’m sorry I have to talk about Justin Bieber right now but his instagram page is terrifying. The comments section. The things girls are saying to other girls. Are those girls on the other end of that username? And not 53-year-old man beating off to the underage girl interaction. Like, it’s just so fucked up. His life, too. I’m reminded of what Dom said about it maybe being the biggest curse, the severest form of punishment, being worshipped as such … like a god, being treated like one, being someone’s meal ticket… completely being absorbed by the world’s eyes. What a terrifying lense through which to see the world. I’m sure many of you would disagree, lol. “He’s got everything!” It’s trickled it’s way down to us all, I feel like.
I want to start a third world instagram. I bet there’s one that already exists. Light-hearted humour. Where we all go and see the hilarious comparisons between us and them. #firstworldproblems … is this something we use to justify our behaviour? What we use as a measure of our humanity to be like “see, we’re aware of our privilege”… “we just can’t do anything about it, so carry on carrying on”… “-but we’re still aware. so, dont get it twisted”.
Real news article from the Globe & Mail: Vancouver couple struggles to make ends meet on only $25,000 a month.
Whose fault is this? Capitalism? No, no… can’t be. Parents? Yes! You’re a fucking failure of a parent if your kid turns out to be such a spoiled, ungrateful brat! But it’s not our fault, parents say. My parents instilled these values in us, it was our society. So, it’s our society? Yes! It’s definitely our society’s fault! Hmm… I don’t know. I’m going to go with the answer that wasn’t an option and say it’s a combination of all these things. One can’t exist without the others. Capitalism didn’t just win because it was the most effective, lol. Everyone faces the effects of previous generations, good or bad. And we are what makes up societies. Our collective consciousness is a reflection of our perceptions of society and the people within it.
What’s real and what’s not, the line doesn’t exist any more. Neither does the definition.
That’s okay. Not to be a thief but Maynard just said it so well, and it’s true, but I recognize this as a holy gift and celebrate this chance to be alive and breathing. Most importantly, I have the most amazing people in my life to celebrate the chance to be alive with, in this matrix of absurdity.