Earlier this week I made a rather unfortunate, completely innocent but completely fucking stupid all the same, faux pas on this blog. I won't repeat what I wrote, it really is a bit embarrassingly awful but it has taught me a valuable lesson, and here was me thinking I was done with all that learning shit, can't I be a proper grown up now?
In my head I was writing something in keeping with the blog post, it didn't even occur to me that what I said could be interpreted differently but when Darren read it he was like, erm....you might want to have another look at that last line, it could be read a totally different way from what you mean. I was all scoffy and irritated thinking I would do no such thing for I am wise and responsible and always bloody right and if people can't understand what I mean then that's their problem, not mine, etc etc.
And then I read it.
Oh good heavens, it read like a bad, really bad, racist joke from the 1970s. It was terrible, I was mortified and hastily reworded the sentence to actually read how I intended it to be read if I hadn't been so ridiculously skimpy with my words in the first place (so lazy, so blah).
It got me thinking about how easy it can be to misrepresent yourself in the public domain and how devastating the results can be. We quickly bash out words as they appear in our heads mostly without a thought to how other people might interpret them and always without thought to the public status of them. I recently read the article about Justine Sacco and was mortified for her, how one stupid comment tweeted to her 170 followers could explode into public misinterpretation and fury, causing her life-changing pain, guilt and anguish.
You like to think it would never happen to you, that you would always be smarter than that and would always, always, make good sense and sensibility. But nope, this is part of our life now, unless you switch off and never text, blog, tweet or status update ever again, you are part of a giant hamster wheel of public commentary that never switches off, never goes away. We've forgotten how to talk to one another, we've forgotten the art of conversation, the subtleties of chat lost to emojis and instagram filters. We've forgotten what mobile phones were originally designed for (hello, talking anyone?), and we have all gone interfuckingnet crazy.
So currently I write this (adding more shiz into the great soup of stuff and nonsense) feeling like an arse and considering keeping my opinions to myself for ever more.
I think Shakespeare had us all in mind when he said 'Life is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing'.