Thursday, August 14, 2008

"Last night I fell asleep in front of my computer while thinking about Tumblr" - H.W.

One of the strange things about the internet is that I believe a lot of times people, anonymously or not, write things or make comments that they assume others won't read. Technorati consistently brings me to random blogs from the outer reaches of the internet that talk about me, or Josh, or both of us, in a way that assumes we'll never read it. But if you link to this blog, we will! Which is fine and good since making communication fast and easy is more or less the goal of the internet; and sometimes if you're PMSing or haven't had coffee yet or our internet personas rub you the wrong way (which is certainly fair) and you shoot off something vitriolic... our feelings will be hurt, but we'll get over it, because we're both learning to take ourselves less seriously, but um, as NYU students, perhaps that is harder than we thought.

But it's odd. When Josh and I first started J&J we certainly boldly wrote about people whom we assumed would never read our drivel. Certain early posts, while we were still yearning for a specific voice, probably read like dorky kids talking about popular kids at a lunch table on the shitty side of the cafeteria. Only, if by accident you spill your milk carton on one of the popular kid's American Eagle polos, then you are on their radar and they might overhear something you say about them to a fellow dork while walking by said shitty lunch table to grab another Uncrustable. And you will get your head punched in... or how much you suck will just be constantly re-blogged on Tumblr. Forever. Into eternity.

Oh, the glory of the interwebs!

Bad metaphors aside, I think there's an important lesson in there that I'm trying to remember now: if you put it on the internet, anyone can read it. It's an obvious sentiment, but it's one that is often overlooked because the internet is just so daunting and huge and the chances of stumbling across something related to you on a random site are pretty slim.

Then again, if you are writing about us - either in a positive or negative way - and you are fully aware we may be reading it and just politely making it sound like we aren't self-conscious, insecure, mildly self-obsessed 20 year olds who will see our names on your blog... then, heh, joke's on me. And of course if you are able to say things about people without caring that they might read it then you are most definitely a stronger person than I.

I guess what I'm trying to say, dear readers, is that you yourself could some day suddenly be swept up into a media mess that you accidentally (YES, accidentally, or at least unwittingly) created and then you'll feel weird about assuming no one reads what you write. Luckily Josh and I kept our writing about random people we could feasibly run into to a fair minimum, but god help me if I ever run into Dina Lohan, right? (Not going to happen)

Anyway, I'm trying to learn how to own my words. It's hard because I'm still trying to figure out what I want to say. I'm unfurling self-discovery and career desires and insecurities in a public forum, which was initially my fault but now is somewhat out of my hands. If I knew who I was it'd be easy to say "fuck the haters" and keep on keepin on. Or I could stop being so oversharey on this here blog. (I probably have a better chance of quitting smoking.)

But I've admitted to my confusion and penchant for existential crises before, and thus it is no big secret that I am this fuck up writing about being a fuck up and then other people write about how I'm a fuck up and so on and so forth. This is the condition of the millennial: learning how to learn about yourself in a space where the private is now public, while simultaneously figuring out how to balance both criticism and compliments without either killing yourself or becoming an insufferable douchebag.

I'm thinking the dead center between those two options is probably this thing they call "happiness," or, at the very least, "self-satisfaction."



eric e. said...

I am just so terribly amaze with your brilliance, every once in a while, and the fact that you're willing to share it!

Yeah, I agree with your revelation. Well, I suppose you know it as well, but everything is an escape, and it's not a matter of an ethereal "be drunk on wine,women/men and/or song" but instead it's -- "pick your poison or your escape or more accurately, the illusion you wish to pursue." Nothing is completely satisfying at the end of the day except, well, let me change that; I think communication is all that ultimately matters. Every particular field of study or work is just as valid and necessary and unnecessary as every other one. Everything and everyone can be justified and unjustified, which is to say our actions don't always matter that much except to ourselves. What keeps us (and not always) from fixating on the futility of our choices or the situations that are forced upon us is communication and exchange. Without it, we crawl up into little small balls of neurotic confusion.

So, everything changes as do the avenues of 'escape' we choose. So, if one avenue begins to show its age, well, pick another until that wears thin, as it will. I suppose, somewhere outside of this wonderful theoretical framework lies the fact that we must eat, clothe ourselves and have someplace to sleep. Whatever illusion we choose to engage hopefully will make possible these 3 things and then some.

Thank you, Jess. Have a safe road trip. Always be lovely.

Tiribico said...

Well done! I will make a list.

1) Career desires. Yep, my mind is all over that ish too. I feel like my resume > my transcript by hardcore amounts and I can't say I'm too happy about ending my summer internship and heading to fuckin' Bobst.
2) Insecurities in a public forum is something....god, I'm just too pussy for. Which is why this is practically anonymous, and the stuff I do write about in my tumblr...I'd like them to be tucked in the hidden places the internet makes us believe still exist.
3) ha to the "insufferable douchebag." I'm not really into leaving bitchy comments against gals, but um I can think of a certain Gawker Media employeee that seems to fit this title. Well at least to me.
4) I hope find happinesss+selfsatisfaction/2.