Tag Archives: online

Closet Skeleton Pioneers

A friend of mine laughed at me the other day when I suggested that I was an “oversharer” on the internet.

“Hah! You? Oversharing?”

Yes, I know. Just a smidge. The thing is, I’m pretty good at toeing a line these days. I don’t tell you what I don’t want you to know. Pretty simple.

Learning how to toe that line, though, WHOO. I done fucked up on more than just a few occasions, s o much so that I jokingly referred to myself and those like me, who’ve been oversharing for years, as “Closet Skeleton Pioneers”.

By that I mean that everyone’s got skeletons in their closets — some lover they treated like shit, a job they stole office supplies from, a friend they betrayed, a speeding ticket, you name it.

EVERYONE has been a dick at one point or another. Dig deep enough and you’ll find dirt. (If not, you’re boring, live a little.)

Luckily for me, I hit the age of 21 before the internet got invented.

And my record’s been expunged. Hardy-har, right.

The point is, despite what you think you know about me, I consider myself a really ethical person and there are things I’ve done and said that I hope never see the light of day because I don’t want them taken out of context, since we all know context is EVERYTHING.

And that’s the problem. When you see a photo on the web or a snippet of a conversational exchange, context gets lost and objectivity goes right out the window with it.

We all know that’s true of many events in our lives.

Don’t we?

So who the fuck is doing all the judging?

Are you? Are employers? Is your lover?

Who’s doing the judging when my friend on Twitter reacted yesterday morning after he received an email after a husband found his wife “Facebook cheating” and sent the entire exchange out to their kids’ school’s parents mailing list? Ain’t just the hubby judging now, is it?

What were employers digging up that led Germany to introduce a new law that will make it illegal for them to do job-applicant background searches on Facebook? Probably they were digging up a lot of skeletons, right?

It goes without question: Things you say or do on Facebook, Twitter, and in other areas of the web can absolutely destroy your life.

But who is doing the judging?

There’s a reason it’s so damn hard to become a Saint in the Catholic Church, you know — perfection’s pretty fucking difficult to come by.

When I was a kid in Bible school, I was told a story about Jesus intervening in a stoning, saying to the angry crowd of sanctimonious rock-chuckers “Let he among you who is without sin cast the first stone”, or somethin’ thereabouts.

Really: In 2010, who’s without sin?

I mean, the Catholic Church outlawed SPEEDING, for crying out loud. Everything’s a sin. The Pet Shop Boys had it right.

When I look back upon my life
It’s always with a sense of shame
I’ve always been the one to blame
For everything I long to do
No matter when or where or who
Has one thing in common, too

It’s a, it’s a, it’s a, it’s a sin
It’s a sin
Everything I’ve ever done
Everything I ever do
Every place I’ve ever been
Everywhere I’m going to
It’s a sin

Was Neil looking back at his life on the web? Woulda if he coulda then, I bet.

So, let’s just accept that everyone’s imperfect, and, instead, (like this guy here and his “degrees of evil” guide to killers), get ourselves a handy cheat-sheet of just what level of assoholic or just plain edgy social behaviour one is guilty of and how it ranks them on the Good Versus Dick scale, okay?

Such as:

  • Never emails or messages you back, but pathologically lurks and knows Everything That Happens every time you talk in person. Creepy but not mean.
  • Likes kinky sex and lets everyone know it.
  • Thinks “cleavage” and “profile pic” are synonymous.
  • Considers social media his personal dick-dipping pool and has more numbers in his contacts than the CIA does.
  • Just LOVES drinking wine and doing so liberally. While telling you all about it. Every single night.
  • Keeps getting caught in masturbatory lies that make them sound great, but you know through the grapevine that they’re barely making rent and are shopping at Thrift Stores, while judging others for doing the same kinda “posing”.
  • Has, like the majority of people over 21, tried marijuana or something else questionable at a party at least once.
  • Speaks frankly about their disgust for political figures or employers.
  • Has a spouse yet endlessly flirts with others, without boundaries, and in public.
  • Has a pulse.

I mean, seriously. Half the things I do on a daily basis would probably get me fired from most jobs, because I’d never keep my mouth shut about what I hate and why. My old employers got a giggle out of it, but I assure you — it’s an acquired taste.

Despite what you may think of my loudmouthed, in-your-face, drinks-too-much, full-of-innuendo online persona (and, yes, it somewhat exists offline, and without a backspace key), I’m a good person.

I’m a really, really good person.

I hold the door open for men and little old ladies. I say “please”, “thank you”, and “sorry.” I look people in the eye. I pay my taxes. I’m honest, I don’t steal. I’m a quiet neighbour, a good daughter, a great friend. I bake muffins for lovers. I pay back my debts.

So, if you want to jump to conclusions about me based on the image I portray on the web — knowing I’m a creative person with a gift for fiction — then you’re entirely entitled to do so, and I’m entirely entitled to think you’re a narrow-minded presumptive dick who’s not worthy of my time.

Or maybe I just see you as someone who needs to think outside the box a little more.

Who I am online might have hurt me in the past but it helps me now. I have something to gain from keeping this persona/point-of-view alive. There’ll always be a price I pay as a result of it, but I’m hoping that’s just the cost of doing business.

I’m not the only web-user with a persona, or with skeletons; I’m just hyper-honest about it.

As time goes on, though, all of us will have our skeletons exposed. Then, with more to compare and contrast, we’ll know who the real assholes are — unless, of course, none of it’s true.

And that’s the problem with reaching any conclusions based on the web.

How do you know it’s true? When everyone can enter information and nothing’s necessarily vetted on the web, how do you know it’s true?

Simple: You don’t.

Here’s how I operate.

I watch for how people actually are with each other, online and otherwise: How they argue, how they’ll never let up, how they want the last word, how they judge others, how they talk about others, how they scheme or gossip. Because it’s in their everyday words and behaviour that we really see who people are — special events, like parties with hijinks, are too out-of-context to really give us an inkling of who someone is.

Me, I’ve written a lot over the years, on topics about everything from drinking and drugs to kinky sex, but you’d be wrong if you thought I was particularly wild or exciting anymore.

I’m being boring nowadays. I just make it sound exciting.

And there you have the web in a nutshell, and why laws like Germany’s are long overdue — when it comes to the internet, you can’t believe everything you read. You certainly can’t dismiss it, either. But there are no litmus tests or polygraphs one can administer to online “personality” accounts to judge the veracity of their content.

It’s time people started realizing you really can’t judge any of us on the little you see of us online, and that the skeletons in our closet aren’t nearly as big or scary as you think they are, especially when brought into the light.

If you want to supplement what you know of someone by how they are online, and you can do so judiciously and with many grains of salt, then knock yourself out.

Just don’t be surprised when that spotlight hits your life, too.

In fact, some of your skeletons probably look awfully similar to ours. After all, dontcha know? It’s quid pro quo season on closet skeletons.

Hey, Got A Cam? Cybersex and Masturbation.

show me ur tits. squeeze em.
oh, yah, baby. ur so hot. hard now.

Ah, the internet: Where the flame of romance never dies.

I’ve been talking about masturbation for the last 10 days or so. How can I possibly ignore cybersex?

The butt of many jokes, cybersex is still vastly overlooked for its potential to destroy the modern relationship as we know it. But that’s changing. Mental health pros are finding themselves inundated with sex addictions these days – more than ever before. It turns out that cybersex is the crack cocaine of sex addiction.

It’s changing the dynamics of human relationships. Communication was already doing pretty shitty before this, but now it’s plummeting to all-time lows.

Now, I’m not trying to be an expert in double-speak here, but I gotta revisit earlier claims that masturbation wasn’t addictive. Let’s qualify that. In the same way that marijuana is not addictive, so too is masturbation not.

Dope, you can get pretty compulsive about. Hell, I’m first in line to admit to marijuana compulsions. It’s “not really” addictive because it can be kicked with a little self-control. I think masturbation’s the same. You can be compelled to do it far more than you should be doing it, yeah. Absolutely. But that ain’t addiction, that’s a user malfunction. It’s a user with an addictive personality, someone with lacks somewhere, who’s trying to fill the need with a substitute of choice.

Hell, that’s life, most days. That ain’t a candybar, honey, that’s a need for affection and someone’s lovin’ arms around ya. Same deal. The only thing is, masturbation’s so much easier to paint with that brush of judgement than, say, having a second helping of pasta. “Oh, but’s a cream sauce, I get it. I can relate.

Needs are needs, and sometimes we fullfil ‘em the wrong way, but we all got the needs, and we all got compulsions.

I’ve done cybersex. Sure. I masturbated when I did, sure. But he had it better at his end, ‘cos after all, cybersex is all about the verbs. Me, I got verbs. Girl’s got vocab, baby. So, I was left a little unquenched, but thank god I was in good hands: Mine.

And that’s the beauty of cybersex. It’s sex on demand, and you know it’s gonna deliver – every single time. With every click, every page, appeasement, baby. You get to fill your own needs, so you get off, fully, completely, each and every time. It leaves everything up to you, it’s more selfish, intensely personal, voyeuristic, and ultimately, it’s all in your head.

Just like every drug I’ve ever had. Personal. Selfish. Imaginative. Voyeuristic. All me. That’s drug use for you, whether you’re into cocaine or Jim Beam, so when anyone tells you cybersex ain’t just like a drug, tell ‘em for me that they don’t know shit.

I think there’s nothing wrong with a little cyber-dallying. Do I? No, I don’t. It’s not my bag – repetitive, uninspiring, and has the feel of those dirty jeans you find on the corner of the floor in a jam – does the job, takes care of the moment’s needs, but a little too loose’n’easy for a real good fit. However, if the right lit man came ‘round with a suitably sexy repertoire of vocab, I’d find myself curious how he’d play through words, sure.

Cybersex worries me, it does. I see dire times ahead for human relationships. I see a time when we’ll be unable to ask for sex in a healthy, seductive kind of way. I see romance and foreplay taking wrong turns. I see communication growing increasingly truncated, and I see us becoming far too introspective and inward-driven to really know how to interact in a meaningful way anymore. In that way, the masturbation is the enabling act that makes it feel “real” when it’s so not.

It’s freaky. I heard about Isaac Asimov’s Robot series and how, in one of the books, he predicted cybersex would transpire – in 3500 AD. Here we are, only 50 years later, doing exactly that — communicating through screens, performing for each other instead of being real, using shortcuts for dialogue instead of fully expressing what’s on our mind. As science fiction, it’s interesting, as reality, it’s disconcerting.

I think it all comes down to balance, really. Masturbation’s awesome, but if you’re sitting around your apartment masturbating all day (must be nice to have such resilient skin and tissue), you might want to consider if it’s doing as much for you as you’re letting yourself believe. It’s about reality checks and knowing when too much of a good thing’s too much. It’s about remembering that your home comes with a door, and when you open that door, a world is at your heels. This virtual shit, well… “Virtual” says it all, really: Nearly real, but, like, not.

I always love to say, “It is what it is.” In this instance, cybersex, masturbation, remember, it ain’t what it ain’t. I ain’t never gonna be what you want it to be. If you’re aware of that, then you’re fine. If you forget that, or lose the desire for the real deal, then you’ve got to take a look at yourself.