Tag Archives: Facebook

Aim high.

Some people want to climb Everest. Some people want to sail around the world.

I’d love to be able to eat food without dripping it down the length of my white t-shirt like a goddamned jackass.

I should probably just stop buying white t-shirts.

Anyway, when I posted this on Facebook, the platform actually asked to help me raise money to figure this out.   Seriously.  Thanks, Facebook.

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Quick tip.

If you want to see even 1 percent of what is happening in America’s cities right now, put aside Facebook and WordPress and get on Twitter.  There is an abundance of footage from cell phone cameras and from local news stations.

Even before the current national crisis, I consistently learned 100 times more from my Twitter feed than from other platforms.  (Of course it depends largely on who you “follow,” but still.)



World War Tweet.

I’m calling it. Historians will look back on the advent of social media as a key escalating factor in international crises.

It actually isn’t always a very good thing when heads of state can spontaneously interact in real-time, at any moment, without their staffs vetting or tempering their messages, even when those heads of state are tired or upset or under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

And there’s more here to consider. If you’re in your 40’s, as I am, you can remember that good friend from high school who you got along swimmingly with if you occasioned to speak with them twice a year — maybe on the phone, maybe when you visited the old neighborhood. You held diametrically opposed views on politics or religion, but those things seldom arose in conversation.

Then Facebook and Twitter brought all of those differences front and center. You could be reminded of them every day — in a platform of interaction that is manifestly habit-forming. The ease and availability of that interaction paradoxically drove you apart. (Recall, please, the old adage that “high fences make good neighbors.”) You woke up one day and realized that your good friend from high school wasn’t such a good friend any more.

What we are witnessing today is a case of technology having disastrous unintended consequences.



Today’s thoughts.

  1. If Mueller’s report is particularly damning, then releasing it on the Ides of March would be one hell of a Shakespearean reference.
  2. Donald Trump autographing Bibles is like me autographing a Gold’s Gym membership. Or a calculus textbook.
  3. I’ll bet yesterday’s Facebook outage did more to prevent Russian meddling in America’s affairs than our President has.



Heyyyyyyyy, it’s Fake Friend Request Day on Facebook!!

Tip of the hat to the nonexistent pretty girls!!

Welcome to Facebook, which you just joined an hour ago!! And good luck at the new job, which … you apparently just started and hour ago … at MacDonald’s.

MacDonlad’s? That’s an interesting choice. Usually you ladies are all veterinarians and personal trainers and scuba instructors and such. Maybe you failed to prepare adequately in your fake school to prepare for your first choice of a fake job. Good luck with that.

I feel lucky, by the way, to be among the first six friends that you sought out on social media.  It’s a select group — just me and five other unmarried men whose immutably credulous and feckless expressions are apparent even in their profile pictures.

Do *I* have that expression?  (Probably.)




A short review of Season 4 of “The Strain”

The fourth and final season of “The Strain” was easily its weakest, but was still fun enough to merit an 8 out of 10.

Season 1 was a unique, detailed, methodically assembled techno-thriller crossbred with vampire mythology — you could tell that it was adapted from a pretty decent book series by Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan.  The show’s subsequent seasons progressively meandered farther and farther into comic book territory … the fourth felt loosely and hastily plotted, with spotty and confusing exposition.  (I was considerably confused until late in the game about who deployed nuclear weapons in the war between vampires and humans, when they did so, and what their strategy was.)

But what the hell.  I still enjoyed this.  The writers here still know where their bread is buttered, and gave survival-horror fans more of the screwball guilty pleasures they were tuning in for.  There was plenty of blood and gore (even if it’s only the white, worm-infested vampire blood that I suspect was easier for the censors to approve). There were more of the show’s creepy, cringe-inducing monster effects.  And there was plenty of action — right up until a finale that was predictable but cool.  (If you’ve been following the show the way I have, do you not want to see machine guns, explosions, swords and severed vampire heads?)

Richard Sammel consistently outshined everyone in his role as the WWII Nazi turned vampire Himmler.  What an extraordinary villain.)  It’s a further testament to his talent that the man actually appears sublimely good-natured in real life.  (He interacts with his fans from time to time on Facebook.)

The show actually surprised me, too, by how attached I got to its characters.  It hasn’t always been a show that is strong on its characters, but … I’m going to miss them.  Vasily Fet (Kevin Durand) and “Dutch” (Ruta Gedmintas) were two in particular that I found myself surprisingly attached to — especially considering that Dutch was a superfluous character that seems to have been added only for sex appeal and romantic tension.  I was rooting for both of them.

So I’d still recommend “The Strain,” despite Season 4’s failings.  To quote Jack Nicholson’s Joker in 1989’s “Batman,” “I don’t know if it’s art, but I like it.”  (Yes, I do know that Walt Disney said it first.  Whatever.)



Throwback Thursday: skipping church!

Here’s a vivid summer memory — and it comes to me courtesy of my dear old friend Sarah in New York, who posted this picture on Facebook not too long ago.  Below is the very beach on Long Island where my older brother and I would park in the early 1980’s when we were supposed to be at church on Sunday morning.

We would eat Entenmann’s donuts and we would listen to WBLI on the radio.  (If you are from Suffolk County, you can’t not hear the chipper WBLI jingle every time you read those four letters.)  If memory serves, the station played Casey Kasem’s countdown on Sunday mornings.

I was pretty young, and I was awed that my brother deemed me cool enough and trustworthy enough to conspire with him in playing hooky from the service.  I was fully complicit, too.  It was my job to run in and out of the church quickly before the service started, in order to grab the Sunday bulletin, with which my mother had instructed us to return every week.

The first time I colluded with my brother this way, I overdid it a little.  Upon our return and gave my mom a lot of unrequested detail about the priest’s sermon, and what it had meant to be.  My brother later pulled me aside in the room we shared, and gave me some sage coaching: “You don’t need to make up a whole big story.”  That was the first time in my life that I learned not to over-embellish a lie.

You see that?  You can learn a lot from a religious upbringing.