Perhaps I Was Too Hasty In Mostly Abandoning Facebook….

This ad just turned up. No restrictions? I would have thought the only restrictions were what kind of cookies she baked for me before I felt the lash.


She’ll also braid you like a challah.

Dunno, I bet a dom who made a mean (no pun intended) maztohball soup and told you to wear a sweater because the dungeon is cold would be refreshingly different for some. And you’ll meet them on Happiness Coming.

Thousands of happy men and women met their soul mates there. And I hope they all stay far, far away from me.


Even Though It’s April Fools’ Day, Here’s Some Ironic Truth

I’ve been way more active on this blog lately, a result of abandoning Facebook posting about a month and half ago. I’m only direct messaging people and playing Scrabble on it these days. Got tired of the endless stream of shit in the newsfeed. Got tired of seeing SO much bad info being spread and feeling totally powerless to affect any of it. Insult added to injury when Facebook’s spiffy new idiotic “fake news” algorithms would block me from posting links to comment threads that illustrated where someone’s lame-ass meme was off base. And lest ye think I was posting links to the psychic down the street, Facebook blocked links I posted from the Washington Post & NPR (never mind how any of us might feel about either of those…. but seriously, Facebook?).

So I figured I’d move my silly posts and such back to here, and perhaps it’d spur me to return to writing the longer blog pieces on movies or TV shows or music or whatever, and it’s mostly worked. But this Oatmeal comic certainly rings true – I still have my blog linked to a Facebook author page, and I constantly get notifications (and now by email) to purchase boosts for my posts.

Um, no thanks.

I’ve yet to see Facebook as a real source of traffic for this blog. My best traffic has come from particular posts that got linked somewhere else online. And from what I can tell, they usually don’t translate into higher book sales. And that’s really the main thing I’m interested in if I’m gonna drive more traffic to this blog.

I’m hoping that all the negative vibes Facebook, Twitter, and the like have been getting will mean a return to the more indy-open field  blogosphere of many years ago. Maybe people will learn to use bookmarks and subscription notifications again. And then people can write and read whatever the hell they want and evaluate for themselves.

Although…. look how stupid they are on Facebook with the confirmation-biased memes.

Fuck it all.

Face the truth:


An Open Message To All The Habitual Political Posters On Facebook (A rant)

The message is: You’re not changing anyone’s mind.

It doesn’t take a university-sponsored cyber-anthropological study to figure this out.  Look at any Facebook political post on your newsfeed, and you’ll see the exact same repeating pattern:

  1. A simple graphic or photo is shared from some other source (usually a Facebook page devoted to politics such as “Being Liberal” or “Being Conservative” that was liked & thereby supplies the stuff)
  2. The graphic/photo oversimplifies the issue and attempts to push emotional buttons via smug self-congratulatory sarcasm
  3. Comments ensue, mostly from the friends who agree with the graphic, sometimes leading to…
  4. One or two people (often the same people) argue the point or discredit the graphic, leading to endless personal attacks and attempts to change the subject, usually beginning with “Yeah, but what about….” and leading to something totally unrelated.
  5. Rinse & repeat when another political post appears.

What I’ve noticed looking at my own newsfeed & after some random browsings of the walls of my more politically activist Facebook friends is that what’s going on is not a debate where someone is trying to convince someone else to adopt a new point of view, or consider new evidence, or rethink an issue. What’s going on is merely the public preening of viewpoint in search of reassuring pats on the back from the safely & comfortably like-minded.

It reminds me of another pet peeve of mine as a film maven. From the time I’ve been in college ’til now, whenever attending a public screening of some old classic movie. At some point, someone in that digitally preserved 1930s world on the screen would spout a line of dialogue ill befitting our own so-enlightened era – they’d describe something as “woman’s work” or whatever – I remember it happening during a screening of the 1936 original Mr. Deeds Goes To Town when someone discusses how “women think differently” – and inevitably someone in the audience would hiss the movie.


Will the characters in the movie change their attitudes from audience reaction? Are we actually all living in The Purple Rose Of Cairo? Well, no, of course not. There’s absolutely no reason for the hiss except for the mere public demonstration involved – a way of standing up amongst an audience of peers and shouting “I AM PROPERLY ENLIGHTENED!”  without actually getting up and shouting words since there’s a movie playing.

Granted, if the guy hissing only does so in order to con his date into thinking of him as a sensitive beta-male & it gets her to put out, I guess I can forgive him. Otherwise, my reaction is always the same: SHUT THE F UP.

Yes, I know many social attitudes of decades ago are worse than now. Gee, thanks for adding an exclamation point to it. Without the hiss, I’d have NO idea. Thank you SO FRIGGIN MUCH FOR GUIDING ME AS TO PROPER BEHAVIOR. I need to start taking notes., thank you OH so much.

I’m actually more interested in seeing the social attitudes & behaviors in old movies that are the same or close to the same as they are today, despite decades of change. But that’s another story & can always turn up later on one of my regular movie blog posts. Yay!

Those Facebook political posts are the equivalent of those movie hisses:  public preening of opinions safely held within your social circle in search of positive emotional reinforcement. Your Facebook feed IS your social circle, by its very definition.  Chances are if you’re like most people, the majority of your social circle tilts towards your own political beliefs. If you’ve moved in the sorts of social circles I have for most of my life – academia & Hollywood…. well, you can now imagine the tilt of my Facebook newsfeed.

That’s why I started thinking about this – I looked at the endless postings by the same three or four friends in my newsfeed & who regularly commented on them, and realized – These people are only talking amongst themselves.  They’re all reassuring each other that they are in the right, a lot like the macrobiotic cooking group I saw one time all trying to reassure each other how delicious the bland cardboard drek I was eating with them tasted. And it’s not a phenomenon for one ideology as opposed to another – browsing the walls of people with vastly different political stances illustrated the exact same pattern.

I’m sure there’s a social psych study out there somewhere about this.

It certainly makes sense when you stop and consider how friendships form & how networks of friends would only remain networks if certain kinds of consistencies in attitudes were present.

Posting political material on Facebook thinking you’ll change someone’s mind is like standing up in temple on Yom Kippur to shout the ten commandments thinking you’ll convert someone in the place to Judaism.


And (ahem) I noticed this myself when I posted political material or took it upon myself to comment on others; whether in agreement or in opposition. After a while I had my epiphany, seeing how pointless it was.  Although I will still engage people in political discussion or commentary on Facebook as in real life… and THAT’S the key.

I’ll talk about this stuff with friends on Facebook the way I do in real life. When there’s listening, no shouting, and a respectful attitude all around. It’s where you can shush someone for hissing during a movie because hissing is, well, bad audience manners, unless Snidely Whiplash is on screen.

So, to sum up: No one cares what you think unless they are insecure & are thinking it already. Facebook posts don’t change anyone’s minds.

And that goes DOUBLE for all those baby pictures. I don’t care how adorable your little darling is when he/she sleeps, craps or points to their bellybutton. It’s not convincing me to run out & have kids any more than the pic you shared of some protester’s sign has changed my mind about the issues of the day.

Either way, I’m tuning you out, opening a cold beer & petting my cat. (Sans beer on Yom Kippur… I don’t want to upset Sandy Koufax.)

So there.

If You’re Here, Please Go Like Me On Facebook

I started a Facebook page for my writing & books. Most of my blog posts here will be publicized on it, so if you’re on Facebook & you like the page, you’ll get updates in your good ol’ newsfeed whenever I add something here.

Click here to go to my Facebook author page

I’ll be putting other stuff on the Facebook page as well, and getting more likes provides me with the illusion of no longer being a leper. So help out! You’ll be glad you did. Thanky!

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