As freshmen in high school, we were all required to take a class taught by one of the physical education instructors. Here, we were taught the finer points of sexual interaction, such as how to place a condom on a banana. (No comment.) They’d covered the basics back in 6th grade, but this class seemed to say, “Okay, the jig is up. Let’s just try to keep you guys from being idiots, alright?”
When we weren’t gagging at a birth video, we were going over the evils of drugs and alcohol. I distinctly remember the instructor shuddering at the idea of being drunk. “Why would ANYONE want to do that to themselves?” She wailed. At the same time, she informed us that being drunk was no excuse for our actions. Alcohol can’t make you do anything you don’t want to do. It only makes you more likely to do and say the things you already have on your mind.
At the time, I found that a rather confusing statement. Then…how was booze bad? I’m a decent child! I never think bad thoughts! Later, I learned the horrible truth of this. Just because you really do want to call and scream at your ex at 3 AM, it’s still an awful decision. We have verbal filters for a reason.
I’ve realized Internet and social media are a close relative to alcohol. It has the uncanny ability to make really STUPID things seem like a great idea. We become heightened, strung-out versions of ourselves. Sure, all of these attributes exist within us, but, dude, keep your pants on at the party.
Take, for example, the fine citizens that make up the law firm of Steven J. Baum. These are hard working folks who decided to cut loose with a little Halloween party. They had some pretty horrifying costumes.
I look at this, and want to go, “Really, guys? Really?” Seriously! These are LAWYERS. Smart people. They have degrees and stuff. Has anyone told them about the Internet? Were they so drunk on how much fun it is to share funny pictures that not a ONE of them said, “Hey guys? I have a bad feeling about this…”
The Internet is like 3 shots of Tequila. The girls get clingy and weepy, and the boys get weirdly brash and mean. Insults are hurled, stalking takes place. Clothing seems to mysteriously go missing. Feelings get hurt, and you’re left clinging to your throbbing skull in the morning moaning, “Why?!?”
I know I’m guilty of a little Social Media delinquency. I’ve looked back the next day and wondered if that post was REALLY needed. Did I truly need to pointlessly tweet at that celebrity? I swear that one day Facebook is going to rat me out as to whose photos I view the most. (Facebook, I will hunt you down if that day comes.) When I feel like I’m getting a little sloppy, I try to dry out a bit. One glass of water for every hour online. Maybe pace myself.
The Internet, much like a margarita, is a fickle mistress. When used properly, it can be a delightful way to pass an evening with friends. However, things can quickly get sloppy. Keep an eye on your companions. Take the laptop or handheld device from them if you see signs of abuse. And always heed the warnings of high school gym teachers.