Negative Nancy

“If you expect to succeed as a writer, rudeness should be the second-to-least of your concerns. The least of all should be polite society and what it expects. If you intend to write as truthfully as you can, your days as a member of polite society are numbered, anyway.”- Stephen King

So, let's talk about my negativity.

Apparently it bothers some people. I expect this. Welcome it, even. Personally, I really don’t care if you dislike like my negativity or sarcastic cynicism, but if it bothers you enough to say something (to me) about how much it bothers you, then maybe it’s time you either block my updates (you can do that on Facebook) or de-friend me.

You know, like how I do when someone does any/all of the following things & instantly becomes the most annoying person on earth:

  • Gets engaged
  • Gets married
  • Pops out some baby
  • Joins a gym
  • Joins a fitness cult (CrossFit, HerbaLife, something else stupid, etc.)
  • Becomes an “online” “personal trainer”
  • And on and on it goes

Not everyone who does these things/does these things publicly on social media turns into a walking, talking, cliche-spitting, spam-posting nuisance, but for the most part that is exactly what happens.

So one day I got sick of it and did what I always do - wrote about it with biting sarcasm:

One individual, who shall remain nameless, had a few choice words in response:

“Believe it or not, the whole concept of ‘eat healthy and exercise=weight loss and healthy living’ seems to be a very difficult one for people to understand. Also, sad as it may be, social media has turned into like the number one form of communication. Sad but true. Seeing posts about people in love, happy and in shape must be almost as bad as seeing people post on social media about their anger, frustration and total despise of the world around them and everyone in it lol”

“Lol” indeed.

Alright, let’s break this shit down.

First, this girl is EVERY person I am referring to in that status. I mean, her relationship (& now well-documented marriage) is not only Romeo & Juliet, it’s also Noah/Allie, Corey/Topanga, Edward/Bella, AND Christian/Anastasia. Combined. On ecstasy.

Her fitness cult IS that she’s an “online” “personal trainer” (and yes, I do have to use those quotes every time I refer to this sometimes ridiculous trendy profession). She’s constantly telling (or in her words, “helping”) the world “fight obesity” (again, her words) by disclosing what time she woke up to work out, how much she’s accomplished in her day by 7 a.m., what healthy food she’s prepped and eating, and insisting you can do it, too! Just ask her and pay her and follow the link in bio for the full recipe but enter this contest first all you have to do is follow her on Instagram and “Like” this pic and repost that pic and hashtag this #hashtag.

Second, what does social media being a means of communication have to do with what I said? I never said, don’t share things about your life. I just meant, if you had a colonoscopy today I nor anyone else needs to fucking know about that.

Social media may be a source of communication but it’s not the only source. It hasn’t eliminated the ability to pick up your phone or text people. So don’t use that shit on me, because it’s an excuse and a cop out. People like this female use social media to “update” about their lives because they want to brag.

And here’s the point I want to make - Bragging &/or wanting to brag about yourself or your life is just fine, so long as you know that that’s what you’re doing & own up to it.

Don’t give me this bullshit about how it’s your means of communicating with people. The person you sat next to in 10th grade biology who’s your Friend on Facebook isn’t desperate to check in on your ab progress. You’re not communicating. You’re bragging.

 “You are not your job, you're not how much money you have in the bank. You are not the car you drive. You're not the contents of your wallet. You are not your fucking khakis. You are all singing, all dancing crap of the world.”

“You are not your job, you're not how much money you have in the bank. You are not the car you drive. You're not the contents of your wallet. You are not your fucking khakis. You are all singing, all dancing crap of the world.”

If you have exciting news you want to “communicate” with the important people in your life, text them. Call them. Email them. Your circle of loved ones, I assure you, is not your 1,000+ Facebook Friends/Instagram followers/Snapchat subscribers etc.

The third and possibly most important thing deals with her third sentence, “Seeing posts about people in love, happy and in shape must be almost as bad as seeing people post on social media about their anger, frustration and total despise of the world around them and everyone in it lol.”

Look your posts annoy the fuck out of me. That’s why I block you from my news feed and write bitchy status updates about people like you.

If I annoy you, and it’s clear that I do, then you can block me. The reason why this girl felt the need to speak up is because she knew / knows that my rage fueled blog posts/status updates/opinions directly correlate to her humble-bragging, over-sharing ass.

What makes people likeable is their accessibility. If you can relate to someone, if you can see a vulnerability in them, that’s what’s great. What makes people Human is what binds people together and ultimately, what makes this absurd thing called life a little more bearable.

When people like this chick broadcast to the world (through social media) that she woke up at 4:15 a.m. and got in her work out and then made her and her perfect husband (whom she never fights with) a healthy breakfast (because she NEVER buys unhealthy food) like a good little wife before you even woke your lazy bones up, all she’s doing is painting an illusion. It’s (usually) a false snapshot of life. One that most people cannot relate to, because they’re too busy sitting in bumper to bumper traffic, or working for less money than they deserve, or trying keep a relationship that’s running on fumes alive.

People like this post photos of their shiny, plastic lives and think they’re “helping” people, but they’re not. And I think they KNOW they aren’t, but try to pass off their self-serving bullshit as if they are. In reality, all this does is make people feel bad for not being like the shiny person, whether that’s in regards to health, fitness, relationships, money, professional accomplishments, etc.

Just because you talk (or post) about something a lot doesn’t necessarily mean you are any more knowledgeable about the subject or any better than someone else.

 “There are two types of people: those that talk the talk and those that walk the walk. People who walk the walk sometimes talk the talk but most times they don't talk at all, 'cause they walkin'." - Hustle & Flow

“There are two types of people: those that talk the talk and those that walk the walk. People who walk the walk sometimes talk the talk but most times they don't talk at all, 'cause they walkin'." - Hustle & Flow

Some of you will cry “jealousy,” i.e. “This girl is just jealous that she doesn’t have the discipline to exercise.” Or, “She’s probably just single and bitter.” To these people, no. I mean, I can totally see how that would be your go-to explanation as to why I feel the way I feel. But it’s an incorrect explanation.

When I wrote that status, and still now to a certain degree, my situation was this (Warning: Total and complete not-humble, very cocky bragging ahead):

Once upon a time a girl moved to a new, hip city, Austin, Texas, with her long-term boyfriend.

Upon arrival, they settled into their trendy and very pricey apartment that had a pool view and was a mere five minutes away from buzzing downtown life.

He had a good paying job in his field of choice. She had a decent paying job in her field of choice. They had a dog, a sweet American Bulldog named Pearl. Eventually, they also got a beautiful German Shepherd named Jax to complete their little family.

In the evenings they would play with their dogs and watch Netflix and drink wine together. She was obsessed with the gym and got shredded.

During their first year in ATX, they attended Austin City Limits and saw Outkast, Chvrches, Sam Smith, and more at Zilker Park.

They spent Thanksgiving with her sister in Denton and when Christmas came they decided to stay in Texas and celebrate, just the two of them and their fur children.

In May he sent her to Spain with her family and by September they were coming up on their 1-year anniversary in Austin, and the 3-year anniversary of their relationship. It was magical.

(Ew.) See? Nice and shiny and perfect. Okay, ready for the unabridged version?

The apartment we lived in was indeed amazing, and way out of our price range. I came to Austin with a good chunk of money and by the time a few months passed I was living paycheck to paycheck. As I still do now.

This of course was because I wasn’t making jack-shit at the job I had at the time, which was working from home for a verbally and emotionally abusive marketing VP (and moving/living on your own is expensive).

Also, working from home in a brand new city where you don’t know anyone and your only friend, your partner, goes to work every day is not conducive to meeting people, building friendships, or sustaining happiness. Who would have thought...

Pearl was always bored and I love Shepherds so I bought Jax from a breeder even though I was still making no money. House-training a 7-week-old puppy for the first time in both of our lives never caused tension and fights, no sir. It also was not and is not a huge expense. Food, treats, toys, castration, vet visits - it’s all totally cheap.

In the evenings we fought over who should take the dogs out to play. We watched Netflix because it was about the only thing we had in common, despite being very much in love with one another. I learned not-so-quickly that common interests and compatibility have little to do with each other.

I was and probably always will be obsessed with the gym because I have issues. (But I’ll save that for a future and separate blog post.) Honestly, I just wanted to post this photo 1. To brag, and 2. To illustrate that I’m not just some fat, bitter, jealous person behind a keyboard bitching about annoying fitness people. On my journey to looking how I look in that picture, I never once felt the need to tell people what I was doing in the gym or in the kitchen. Why would I? I’m not going to pretend to care to divulge that information. I just wanted to show off.

Christmas Day was good, if only a little sad. I did my best to decorate and get in the holiday spirit and implement the same cute traditions my parents did when I was growing up. And it was actually really nice. I wore the Santa hat and made the standard Christmas dinner and we drank wine and saw a movie in the evening.

But none of that changed the fact that we both missed our families. We missed our friends.

We fought a lot about things any couples fight about. It was the first time either of us lived with only a significant other and no one else. And we decided to do this for the first time out of state and a year after we did long-distance. It was rough at a lot of points.

We eventually built friendships together as a couple as well as individually, but it took some time, and I slowly realized that friendships post-grad are very different from the friendships made while funneling beers from balconies and fashioning bongs out of apples. That’s just the way life works.

In September shit hit the fan. We broke up before our lease ran out (but after we had signed a new one elsewhere), before our 1-year Austin anniversary, and before our 3-year relationship mile marker. Which you can read all about in either or both of the two blog posts below:

I Said Yes
Because the Only Way I'll Get Through This Is by Laughing

“Sometimes love isn’t enough,” my mom used to say. Boy, was she right.

But the thing is, despite all of the many ups and many downs, despite missing my family and friends and Pub subs and saving money, I had a blast. I had a good first year in Austin. I loved my too-expensive apartment. I loved my asshole, money-pit of a German Shepherd. I loved (eventually) making more money at a new job. And I loved Andrew.

I also hated Andrew. And the too-expensive apartment, the asshole German Shepherd, and the new job.

That’s life. It goes up and it comes down. My sense of humor and writing tone can be labeled as “negative,” I suppose. But I’d like to think that it’s neither positive nor negative. It’s just honest. I want to tell the truth. And the truth isn’t shiny, plastic, perfection. It’s not smooth-sailing relationships and spotless apartments and constant job fulfillment and financial satisfaction.

That’s not truth. It’s not real, and it’s not real life. But struggling with the sometimes shitty parts of life does not mean someone is unhappy. It doesn't mean they love or laugh any less. It doesn't make them weak. It just makes them Human.

Lastly, that snarky “lol” at the end is pathetic. If you’re going to stand up for yourself and take a stance against what I have to say, I can respect that. But reverting to your 16-year-old high school self where you puff up your chest and then end it with a diminutive L-O-L at the end is spineless and lame and thus I can no longer respect you or your unsolicited and weakly formed opinion about my me, my status, or anything else.