Emotee cons

Teddy asked me to write a post about emoticons...because he hates them.  Teddy really never asks me to post about anything but lately, people have been pissing Ted off.  Things that have been hurting me all along are starting to hurt him too.  He has a thick skin but it is starting to wear a little thinner.  While he used to make excuses all of the time for other people's poor behavior, as time has worn on, it is getting harder to excuse the insensitive comments of some of the people that he interacts with.  What has been driving him a little crazy in the past few weeks are the insensitive or downright offensive emails and texts he has received with happy or sad face emoticons stuck at the end of the offensive line.  Somehow people think that the "emotee" makes the comment ok.  If you don't have anything nice to say - don't say anything at all.  Offensive and/or insensitive messages are still offensive and insensitive - even when you stick a colon and parenthesis at the end of the message :)

The challenge in writing this post is in not telling you what was "said" to Ted in these texts and emails.  When someone says something hurtful to me, I just write it here.  I figure that the offender probably knows that they have offended and if they don't know it, they should.  In my mind, it isn't like I am actually selling anyone out.  You don't know who I am talking about.  I don't use anyone's name or anything (even though sometimes it practically kills me not to).  The only one that knows I am talking about them IS the person I am talking about.  Kind of passive aggressive I know, but better than having to get "into it" with every insensitive shmo.  Ted would rather I not spell out the offenses though.  He still wants to protect people who haven't bothered to be protective of him.  I can see he is starting to crack though so if I were you, I'd watch it.

I think Ted and I can both agree that there is a time and place for most things.  I've certainly had a good laugh from a well placed "ironic" smiley face - for example, "Digging your skinny jeans :)".  And, using an emoticon to emphasize a point is also fine in my book - as in "I spent the whole night crying :(".  But, unless you are a 12-14 year old girl, you should probably know that an emoticon shouldn't actually take the place of expressing a real emotion.  And for that matter - neither should making an actual sad face (lip curled over, head cocked to one side, hands in fists wiping away tears that aren't being cried).  And for another matter - neither does writing out an emotive action, like ((HUGS)) or (tears).  And, lastly, if you write something totally sh*tty, you can't make it better by putting a winkie at the end of it ;).  Again, use them to emphasize a point (if you must) but for some reason reading "I want to give you a big hug right now" feels a lot more sincere than ((HUGS)).  I have always believed a good "I am laughing so hard, I am peeing in my pants" more than a "LOL".  I mean, are you really laughing out loud, or are you just sitting there zoned out, staring at your screen and writing an obligatory "LOL"?  Which is it?

Here is what I guess I am saying, and really, what I have been saying all along - Use your words.  Be authentic.  Just give it a try.  Stop using syntax to emote.  I mean, have we really become THAT lazy?  It's a short cut and it feels as icky to be on the receiving end as it does to hear one of those stupid "well-meaning" platitudes: "He's in a better place now", "You can always have more children" "God needed another angel".  One of these days I'll stop being so preachy - promise.  Today is just not one of those days.  

Ted - not so sure if I did your sentiment justice but I gave it a shot....((hugs))  ;)


Sonia said...

There are plenty of people on Facebook who end each sentence with 'LOL'. it drives me batty too.

Perhaps I am too old, but I remember a time (long ago) where LOL meant 'lots of love'??

Tiffany said...

Lol ;)
Ok seriously texted platitudes are the freaking worst. I'm so sorry that Ted (& you) have to deal with lines like that.

NikaM said...

"I mean, have we really become THAT lazy?"

Yes. Sadly.

Susan said...

or lots of luck... my Dad keeps adding it to stand for "lots of love". For ages, I could n't work out why he was always laughing at me.

Susan said...

Hugely unfair post - we are now all itching to know what the bastards said to Ted :-)

maxiesmommy said...

No bastards. In fact, all nice people. Just a little misguided....like we all are at times. Emoticons are simply a pet peeve Ted and I share. I remember from one of your recent posts that you tend to agree.