We have a new next door neighbour, in her seventies, who is clearly more than a little nervous about the environment around her. As a result, my husband agreed to her having gates fitted either side of the hedge outside the house so that, in her own words, we could ‘keep the dogs out’ that love to poop on the stones laid out front. To make sure they stayed out, she kindly provided me with a padlock for said gate on our side, presumably because dogs don’t have opposable thumbs. There will no doubt be complaints once she realises that the animals she’s trying to keep out won’t let a gate stop them if that’s where they want to take a dump. I can’t abide waste, and to watch someone throw money on something that they think is worthwhile but is effectively pointless? I suppose that’s a metaphor for many people’s lives right now. You do what you need to provide a notion of protection but in reality, it’s a lie. There was an an important epiphany post School Run this morning, and it’s probably worth taking some time to work that into a blog post.
The notion of ‘Internet Celebrity’ is, like it or not, a total falsehood. Like most other forms of fame, it is entirely reliant on people knowing who you are away from your ‘home’ turf. A Canadian hockey player will be anonymous in a Yorkshire town. A top ballroom dancer won’t matter in a New York subway. Context is everything, and to even get close to being well known…? I can think of Dan and Phil as maybe the best example of how you use the Internet to start making you famous, before other stuff makes you more famous still. Oh yeah and there’s Felix Arvid Ulf Kjellberg, but nobody talks about him any more because Internet Celebrity, by its very nature, is fleeting and ephemeral. The point is simple: if you’re on the Internet, you can afford an Internet connection and if you can access that? You’re better off than a vast section of the planet, many whom are lucky to have clean water.
Once that fact registers in your noggin, everything else becomes about individual comfort, and how you perceive the World around you. If you choose to believe you can be as big as celebrity as those who are only minor to begin with? Well, away you go and follow youre dream. I am never going to suggest you shouldn’t push for what matters, because that would be both foolish and churlish. That’s how real progress is made, at least some of the time. For everything else, there is a fucking shittonne of hard work, pain and disappointment, and pretending these things aren’t necessary or required is the first stage of a delusional journey that ends up making you not simply a fool, but a bigot to boot. Yup, I used a bad word with good reason.
That’s a powerful word, and right now on the Internet I see a lot of them. Many of these people would never dare say what they do in the real world for fear of the consequences, but online it’s Open Season for sectarianism , prejudice and all out flagrancy. However, as was apparent by the shockingly low turnouts in both the UK Brexit Referendum and the US Presidential Elections, they’re not the real enemy. It’s the people who don’t say or do anything that are the bigger problem. The apologists and apathists and the couch media experts, the blinkered and conceited who when you challenge them to rethink their world views won’t budge. Their life isn’t for other people to dictate, but it’s certainly never going to change, either, because as long as they are in control, that is all that matters. These people freely dictate celebrity as easily as they condemn it. The right follow from someone like this results in others trotting along to do the same like the sheep they are, and that’s just stupid.
There’s not a fucking thing I can do about it however, so why worry?
I write every day as therapy, more or less, it has become the means by which I keep myself sane and a focus on the true reality of my existence, which only involves the Internet as part of a far larger whole. The fact it’s a great tool for self promotion is clearly a happy accident, but I don’t think at any point I’ve used this to my own advantage in an overt fashion. There have been several points where I was offered opportunities to ‘work for free’ and ‘expose my abilities’ to a wider audience and with every one I’ve just said no. I have one paid writing gig, one that I’ll happily and willingly do for nothing for the rest of time, and that’s it. I am not using this platform to get famous: if it happens as a result of me being here? Biggest and happiest fucking accident in the History of Me. What matters far more is if I’m able to make someone think, or interact with someone who does the same for me. That’s why I’m now right cheesed off with those people who can’t even be bothered to bugger off with a measure of self-respect.
I see you people want to stop listening, but you don’t want to lose me from your readership. That quiet unfollow when my noise just becomes too much for your soft, sensitive underbellies to stomach. Nope, you won’t force unfollow me because then you lose out on a vital number, and what matters more is that you’re somehow devolved from the whole sad, sorry experience. I have to then wonder why you listened to begin with because quite obviously it wasn’t because it mattered, was it? Oh yeah, you got something out of me, didn’t you? Yeah, and now that gone… no real point, so time to move on. There you were, accusing me of passive aggressive bullshitting and at the first opportunity you have, you’ll fuck off but make sure I’m still doing a job for you. And with that paragraph of bile summarily expunged from my system, I feel far better than I have in months, because I understand this is nothing important. You don’t matter, if you believe that somehow your armchair rhetoric will ever account for anything.
There are many, many great, useful and righteous people using the Internet for Good right now. I am making it my job to listen to dissenting voices, and then making my own judgement based on what I see and hear. It’s not just a few people any more telling me what’s going on, I’m trying to widen the net and talk to those I feel aren’t being heard as much as they could be. In the end however, some of you people don’t have a fucking clue. You’re only here to hear what you want, and if that doesn’t include me now I’m rather relieved, because I’m only going to become noisier and more reactive as time goes on. If that’s really not any kind of shit you’re interested in? Excellent. That suits me just fine.
Don’t let the door hit your unexercised, entitled arse on the way out.