Sunday, 30 March 2014

Put an end to this selfie righteousness

Left the house this morning just before 7AM for a good cycle ride before the world was up and about.
It goes without saying that the birds had beaten me to it of course, and were doing their damnedest to make sure the humans were awake too by sitting outside people's windows shouting their little feathered heads off. It was too early for the billions of insects to be out of bed too, which meant that I was able to enjoy the ride without them all converging on my face for once.
The roads were mercifully uncluttered by traffic. Just a few vehicles out and about at that time, many of which appeared to be younger individuals (including one particularly paranoid Clio driver being followed carefully by a motorcycle cop) making their way home the morning after a fun night of drunken revelry and debauchery - photos of which will no doubt be appearing on thousands of Facebook walls today to haunt them for a long time to come.
There's a pretty good chance that a large percentage of these walls will be on profiles headed up by a photo featuring the owner wearing excessive amounts of make-up and pulling a weird face that invariably involves a trout-pout of Leslie Ash proportions. This is the sort of photo that years ago would only have been seen at the back of a gentleman's magazine in the adverts offering various (ahem!) professional services.
Is that the kind of impression these people really want to portray of themselves? The trainee prostitute look? There's usually enough foundation applied (presumably with a trowel) to ensure that even the most pock-marked, acne-scarred visage is left as smooth as a baby's bum - the cosmetic equivalent of Polyfilla. The eyeliner and eye shadow are generally so excessive that the wearer looks like they've done five rounds with Mike Tyson, and I struggle to find any reason why anyone would post a picture of themselves looking like this. It's hard to imagine that it could be considered sexy or attractive to adopt a look that's not a million miles away from the average clown, as the circus is not exactly the first place one would expect to find the back row of the audience full of furtive looking blokes sporting suspicious bulges under their raincoats while drunk businessmen insert fivers into the waistband of the clown's baggy trousers.
It's just another example of people being afraid to be themselves and instead resorting to the comfort of being like the rest of their peer group, even if that group does happen to be the Creepy Big Top Whore Collective.
While they undoubtedly have their uses, social networking sites really do have a lot to answer for, and it's as if everyone wants to join the party. The wife pointed out to me this morning as she was getting some breakfast that the cereal box suggested that you could follow Weetabix on Twitter. She was as confused as me as to why someone would wish to do so. What exactly is Weetabix up to that would be worth getting updates about? Is Weetabix doing a walk around the UK coast to raise money for charity while avoiding the puddles and rain in the hope of not going soggy before the journey is over? Doubtful, so whatever the appeal might possibly be, I really can't be arsed to even look. Every product, manufacturer and special interest group is catered for in some way on these sites and it's rammed down your throat at every turn. So much so that even I sometimes wonder if perhaps I'm missing out on something by deliberately avoiding such things. Curiosity occasionally overcomes me and I have a look at some of the stuff that's out there and it doesn't take long for me to be reassured that my own life free of such things is preferable to one of self-indulgence, one-upmanship, bragging, and dodgy pictures of circus prostitutes. Apart from my weekly rants on this blog of course....