Ahh, of course. Another story of a privileged millennial girl with an iPhone, who probably spends too much time with her phone glued to her hand, and not enough time pondering the real issues of the world. (If you’re not interested, you can stop reading now and focus your attention on the ceasefire in Syria or the situation with the Great Barrier Reef. You know, important stuff.)
Here I was, mindlessly scrolling through my feed, when suddenly, Instagram logged me out of my account. No biggie, it’s happened before. I simply attempted to log in again, but then I got this message:
It’s been well over thirty years since the release of Weird Science. For those of you unfamiliar with the plot of the classic 80’s flick, it goes a little something like this: two high school nerds use highly questionable computational and engineering methods to build themselves the “perfect” woman. While I can’t speculate as to how close the global scientific community is to achieving the ends laid out by Gary and Wyatt in the film (most likely dangerously close), I can say that societally, we now have other means for building the “perfect” companion in our brains. Technology gives us the power to fill in the many blanks presented by the potential partners we come across.
The blanks exist because these would-be partners want it that way. Anyone who wants us to know more simply divulges to us to the information we seek. Yet we trudge on, stalking Facebook profiles, Instagram feeds, Spotify playlists etc. for anything we can find, determined to fall in love with who we think someone is. On top of that, we pair what we find with the tiny tangibles we are given to convince ourselves someone is “right” for us. Really, it’s what a person has resolutely and very selectively projected to us that we are so attracted to. Logic doesn’t seem to matter much in this arena. We know better. Despite sounder judgment, borderline-obsessive internet sleuthing in various degrees of severity persists in many of us. I must confess to it personally. While what we find isn’t always real, I’ve concluded that the feelings we generate in the process are.
It’s hard to think of the month of February without acknowledging Valentine’s Day, which is smack dab in the middle of the month. I think we can all acknowledge that Valentine’s Day is a purely Hallmark holiday. It exists for the purpose of selling things. People in relationships flock to buy gifts and garnishments and meals for their significant others to validate their level of care and commitment. People not in relationships go through the motions of these things, because they feel like they are “supposed to.” Culturally, we’ve been made to feel, through mass consumerism, that if we aren’t participating in the Valentine’s Day hoop-la we are doing something terribly wrong and missing out.
I bought this gorgeous green, lace dress for the holiday season as a cyber Monday steal. There are few things in life that bring me greater joy than shopping from a sofa… I hoped to wear it either to a Christmas party, or a New Year’s Eve function. Despite this hope, I think I knew in my heart of hearts, neither of those things was going to happen. But can you blame a sista’ for trying?
Red is such a festive color, especially during Christmas time, and it holds a very special place in my heart.
Interestingly enough, my family actually doesn’t celebrate Christmas. Christmas tends to fall very closely to the biggest holiday in Chinese culture – Chinese New Year. Thus, all of our energy tends to go towards planning that holiday. This is when we prepare a giant feast, and instead of presents, we get red envelopes full of cash.
As it happens, red is also the main color motif during Chinese New Year. Legend has it that it scares away the evil monster Nian (“Year.”) To this day, it’s worn to bring good luck.