Happy-looking people having great times - THE CATASTROPHIZER
 
Recently, doctors have begun to warn of the dangers of "Facebook depression." According to this article, young people can start feeling low because of repeated exposure to "status updates and photos of happy-looking people having great times."

This is a problem not limited to the young, as I can attest. So many people I knew long ago have moved to exciting places, have been to parties, have visited cottages. So many people have jobs and handsome dogs and way more friends than I have. Facebook shows me this, and Facebook cares not. 

Then there are the blogs. Oh, THE BLOGS. My friend (who does not even live here but whose good taste defies geography) brought the following blog to my attention: www.asinkremains.com. It's written by a young woman from Toronto and features attractive, light-drenched things. There are photos of gorgeous, delectable meals (from restaurants at which, theoretically, I could also be dining as I live in the same city), and photos of relaxed but hopelessly stylish living rooms (which I could at least be working towards by way of yard sales and a keen eye for sales), and photos of attractive women in relaxed and hopelessly stylish clothes (all my pants are the same colour. Why are all my pants the same colour?). Also, why am I not accompanied everywhere by dancing motes of sunlight?

This kind of blog creates in me a feeling it took me awhile to find an appropriate name for. I considered "envog" (envy + blog), and "blinferiority" (blog + inferiority) , and "bluilt" (blog + guilt), but in the end settled on "blahg." Such blogs make me feel blahg. 

But then I thought: "Surely there must be others who stay in on Saturday nights with their best friend Robert Osborne...who will never be comfortable pairing shorts with tights...who will never be in a position to craft their own letterpress wedding invitations..." Surely there must be others who live untidily and unstylishly and in a way that would embarrass blogs and Facebook pages alike. 

So to counteract the effect of the blogs that make me feel blahg, I offer the following three photos of my apartment, all totally unstaged.


Picture
1 bag of Swedish Berries (empty); 1 bottle of cheapest-available Argentinian wine (not drinking during the day - just neglected to put it away the night before); 1 copy of New York Times (largely unread)
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1 bottle of wheat germ (never sure exactly how long that's supposed to last; doesn't yet have the rancid smell the internet warns me about); 1 extremely large and aged bottle of tonic from long ago when my friends came over and we had some with gin; a cucumber for my guinea pig.
Picture
1 vibrantly grey sweatshirt-like shirt I got at Old Navy; 1 vibrantly grey cardigan I got at Jacob at some point in the 1990s and continue to wear.
It's not that I want people to stop having beautiful things, and making beautiful things, and looking beautiful; it's just not nice when you think that everyone around you is living a beautiful life while you're busy throwing out some questionable leeks (that you never used because you never got around to making that quinoa recipe) while watching an NCIS episode you've already seen and didn't like the first time. 

But if I could convince myself that in living rooms everywhere regrets are cultivated while leeks go bad and Mark Harmon looks weary and worldly-wise, I'm sure I'd feel a whole lot better.

POLITE DISCLAIMER: This site is intended for entertainment purposes only. If you are not entertained, fair enough.

Ilan
5/2/2012 16:49:33

Man, you have a sweater? Ugh. I wish *I* had a sweater.

Also thank you for this therapeutic, cleansing post. The Internet is better now. I dub this new phenomenon "Bléalité" (blahg + reality)

Reply
The Catastrophizer
5/9/2012 19:41:33

I take it all back. My sweater is successful, attractive, and highly-paid, and I frequently take it with me to desirable cottages. You are right to envy me.

Reply
Jill
6/7/2012 21:05:50

i get serious blog envy too. If you are into hour 2 of reading these "dappled in sunshine-look at my poached egg- random shot of my shoes", i suggest coming up for air by reading just a sentence or two on each page. The blog you mention now reads like this, and is so ridiculous sounding:

"Decided to omit Brunch and just go straight for some fish and chips at Chippy’s across from Bellwoods...I made a tissue paper garland...I wore flats for the first time since winter hit and a coworker remarked how white my feet were. Time for more sun!...It’s actually the most insane how crazy out of shape I’ve become all over again after 3 weeks of no running. But I’m running again, so yay?...bought striped straws. They’re cute but I’m used to plastic so I’m not sure I’ll be buying paper again – I get weirded out about glue and wet paper…been having a major love affair with grapefruit lately. Serious, serious yum."

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