How to Be a Dad

How to Be a Dad

Social “ME”-dia: Show & Hell Game

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I know we just did an INSTRUCTIONAL DIAGRAM on this, but I think I’ve figured out the purpose for “social” networking websites and I wanted to get your opinion on it.

Hour after hour, we busily, mindlessly update our “statuses” and check into “locations” and tweet our twitters like some sort of video game that we’ll never finish. We, the masses, share things that wouldn’t even be handed the privilege of being scrawled on a bathroom wall. But that’s not what I think social networking, in its essence, was meant to do…

social media addicts make great petsCompiled by HTBAD Insomniacs Unlimited™, “We aim to shame!”

What I Think Social Networks Are For

I think it’s so that parents, who have to stay at home with their children, can do one of three things:

    A.Politely remark to their partner while looking at Facebook, “Hey, guess what Joe is doing tonight?” LOUD SIGH.

    B. Harshly snap at their partner while looking at Twitter, “Joe, is such an a-hole. He goes out partying every night. Pretty sure he’s an alcoholic.”

    C. Remark to their partner under their breath, “Wow, Joe sure does travel a lot. Ohhh looook! Guess what, he’s going on vacation from the vacation he’s already on… again.”

All of the above commentary might have happened in my household. If it did, I’d probably err on the side of unmitigated jealousy and mild irritation/snarkitude (Answer B). It’s like the whole purpose of these real-time updates is to push them into the faces of other people who can’t visit or do all those things. Look how special I am. Read how loved I feel. Gaze upon the most amazing picture of the most incredible sight you’ve ever witnessed. You know, the one that you actually haven’t, aren’t and won’t witness.

Here are some paraphrased examples of these kinds of updates:

“Look how happy and fulfilled I am! TGIM! (Thank God I’m Me)”

“Can’t wait to get off work so I can take my 12th vacation in the past 6 months!”

“Sooooo tired. LOL! Isn’t it funny how wiped out you are when you get 13 hours of sleep?”

“Ohmygod! I just ran into [insert name of your favorite celebrity] at the [insert name of exclusive restaurant/bar/club/private island] and got offered a job paying [insert ridiculous amount of money] to pretty much just hang out!”

We’ve all seen the “where’s the dislike button?” comment about a billion times, but I want to know where the STFU button is.

Wrap that baby in blanketsLook at him. He’s like Mother Theresa but cuter.

Then again, my baby smiles a lot and I have many pictures of him smiling on my social appendages. Am I forcing others to see my happiest moments with my son? Does that mean I’m just “mommyjacking” the social conversation?

I can remember when I would look at new parents on my networks and think about how obsessed they were with their little wormy, smushed-face baby. The overwhelming “oh, how cutes” would make my teeth rot. And then it happened to me. I was infected by the same disease. My son is the most beautiful child I’ve ever laid eyes on. Does that make me a hypocrite?

Well, deal with it, slackers. Go have some kids. I’ll shut up, if you do.


27 Responses to “Social “ME”-dia: Show & Hell Game”

  1. DJPimpDaddy says:

    Where is the like button?

  2. 3 or 4 nights a week my wife and I down a bottle of wine while on the couch and read the dumbest tweets to each other while using a thick Russian accent.

    There are more than a few who we consider staunch “comrades” of the Red Party.

  3. Annie says:

    My daughter woke up screaming from a nightmare. I dragged her in with me, and at some point during the night I was kicked in the cheek by her extremely hard. (I look like I beat myself up) So after barely any sleep I read a status from one of my friends who has NO children. She complains a lot. “Being awake since 4 is great fun. Everyone should do it.” I am sitting there with my bruised face, downing my pot of coffee, and attempting to get work done. I ALMOST picked up my computer and threw it at the wall. At the last second I realized I should not punish my computer for her ridiculous posts. Of course on the other hand she has to witness my Kate said *insert cute thing* today posts. (seriously I cannot help myself! The child is hilarious!)

  4. The motivational quote posters? I seriously want to stab them in the head.

  5. Dale says:

    This leads to yet another interesting discussion. Exactly how many pictures of your child, posted over a given period to TOO many. I try to limit myself to one picture every other week. It’s my attempt to not become one of “those parents”. You know the ones I’m talking about. The 3-picture-a-day poster. The “OMG, (insert name here) just sneezed, and it was the cutest thing I have ever seen” status updater.

    Admittedly, I tweeted you yesterday regarding a particularly catastrophic diaper change (thanks for the RT, by the way), but I have two excuses. A) I was home alone with my daughter, and Twitter was the closest outlet that would immediately allow me to vent, using only my one clean hand. And B) I knew you would understand!

  6. Manda says:

    What really drives me up the wall are the stupid chain re-posts. “If you don’t post this for an hour you don’t care about Stendhal Syndrome!”

    Because I’m sure that everyone who re-posts that is just throwing gobs of time and money toward research……riiight.

    (and Stendhal Syndrome is an anxiety disorder that is triggered by being around too many beautiful objects at once.)

  7. Thad says:

    My personal pet peeve is people who update their status with every little thing they are doing or thinking, regardless of the level of importance of those things, then have the nerve to complain about how I never update my status. They “just want to know what is going on with my life.” Guess what? I’m not going to update my status unless something absolutely astounding happens. If I am doing something that involves you personally, I’ll call you. Otherwise, don’t expect constant updates. Why? Because (1) it is none of your business; (2) Facebook is considered public domain and can be accessed by almost anyone for almost any reason, including news agencies, police, etc., and it’s none of their business either; (3) I simply don’t have the time to update that often, what with me having a job, homework and, yeah, a baby; and (4) the reason we are not born telepathic is because the average thoughts of other people are simply not that interesting and should not be shared, and if my life was really exciting enough to justify constant updates I would have my own reality show. Which I don’t. So I don’t feel arrogant enough to burden you with constant updates of my every thought and action. I’d appreciate it if you would do the same. Then I wouldn’t have to block half of my online “friends'” status updates.

  8. So…we’re supposed to read other people’s posts?

    Um. I thought it was all about what I’m doing, why I’m doing it and on what toilet I’m sitting on while I’m doing it. Clearly there are way many more “I”s in that sentence than “other people”s.

    The truth is that Facebook scares me — it’s too much of a commitment; and Google+ is like the crack to Facebook’s pot and I’m afraid to get sucked into that vortex.

    That leaves Twitter which just rattles away whether I’m there or not. That’s more my style. I just read a tweet that said “This body spray smells like regret.” Now THAT’S worth my time.

  9. Travis says:

    Well, since I’m never having children, I imagine I’ll just have to get used to your rants. Or buy a blindfold. 😉


    • charlie says:

      Trav, you’re not one of the aforementioned scuminati. You are a perfect unique snowflake. Never forget it. If you bitch about something, it is a real-world problem that any parent or sans-child individual could get behind.

      Lest we forget social media’s original purpose: to spout.

  10. That is such a cute picture…not as cute as mine, of course, but cute none-the-less!


  11. Julie says:


  12. Stephanie K. says:

    My daughter and son are the most beautiful babies on this planet and the world must know about it 30 times a day! DEAL! ;-P

  13. Tracy says:

    Well, what if I use pics of my nephew and two nieces to pretend I have an interesting life? 🙂 They are the cutest kiddies ever, btw!

  14. Half the people on Facebook I don’t even know they are alive until they are taking the MOST AMAZING vacation. Screw those people. That’s not being social, that’s being an ass.

  15. Adriana says:

    If I see another “I speak my mind get use to it” post on fb I’m gonna…roll my eyes at the computer and tweet about my husband’s obsession with Zelda.

  16. JeninCanada says:

    I prefer actual status updates like how a person’s day is going, what the family is up too, etc, over posters, pictures, funny things etc, almost any time. It’s gotten to the point that most of my wall is just nonsense and nothing of substance about people I actually give a damn about.

    As for how many pics of your kids is too many? If you have doubt before hitting ‘post’ on the next batch of them, scale it back and maybe only post a couple of the *really* good ones. I’m telling myself I’m going to stick to a once a week baby photos schedule when this one gets here in August.

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