September 19, 2011

We're All Stars on Facebook

There's a lot more space for mediocrity online.

You don't have to be a writer to blog. You don't have to be a political analyst or standup comedian or scriptwriter to tweet. You don't have to be a photographer to have a flickr account. And you don't need to be... well, anything, to be on Facebook.

Which is all very well, since it serves as much-needed *practice* (for want of a better word). If I blogged every week, my writing would improve in a few months. The more pictures I clicked, the more I'd see what could change. Until - and this is a big "until" - my mediocrity starts being encouraged.

I have no incentive to write better if comments are only going to say "LOL!". If my instinct at a failure is to feel bad and give myself a tough time about it happening - it doesn't really help to say so online, because all it means is that 7 people will comment telling me "Don't be silly, you're amazing." The failure proves the exact opposite, in fact, so what are they talking about? While I don't deny I'm amazing in general (hah! :P) it's obvious that hardly any thought that went into a comment that makes me feel better about myself - for no bleddy reason.

Similarly, I have no incentive to work harder, as long as I can log into Facebook, bitch about my life and the state of my studies and have 6 other people tell me how it's completely okay to be frustrated, and how I need a break.

Because, really, I don't. No one does. Everyone has enough breaks, enough help, enough advice and enough politeness. What none of us seem to have, is enough introspection.

All around you, all over cyberspace, and especially all over Facebook, you will see mediocrity. Mediocre pictures, mediocre art, mediocre talent, mediocre lives. I'm not being condescending. This is mediocrity that could have been something else, if it wasn't crowd surfing on more mediocrity. And why does it find support? Why do you tell someone something is "awesome"? Is it...
1. Because you think so?
2. Because you know they want to hear it?
3. Or because it makes you feel better that someone comparable to you is *awesome*, hence, by extension, you might be too?

We're all part of it. Ranting online makes me immensely happy. Not just as a release of frustration. But as a substitute for action. Having a consistent (albeit largely fake) feel-good atmosphere strips you of the desire to change something, to do something differently, to take control, to move forward.

This post won't really end with one of those grand promises. Because I really don't know how much can change. I'm sure this will garner enough comments telling me how the world is a more empathy-filled place, support systems, etc etc. Maybe. Maybe not. I'd just rather have genuine criticism that makes me stop and reconsider, than hypocrisy-fuelled inertia. Good night, peoples.

PS. If your comment here is positive, that's fine. But if it's "Lol!" or "Wow!", it'd be irony of the worst kind. :)

September 05, 2011

"It does not take courage to survive"

...or so says the principal of a college, to a woman who has dealt with and bounced back from an acid attack, and wants to push for awareness and inclusiveness towards burn victims.

In addition, interacting with a victim of an acid attack is a bad idea for college students because it will *put the girls off the idea of marriage.*

Where do I start? I'd rather not. Just read the article.