Tuesday, August 26, 2008

The Nihilistic Impulse

Unlike a lot of people, I don't find the signal-to-noise ratio on the internet to be that bad. I've learned a lot roaming about on-line, and met people I've been happy to know. Sometimes, though, you get a little depressed because of the assholes and loons who make noise disproportionate to their number.

Lately, I've been toying more and more with chucking the whole virtual world. Dissolve the blogs, and erase my accounts with various message boards, and use the computer for the purpose for which it was intended: playing EA Sports NHL 08-09. Most of what I do is for my own amusement, and I don't think anyone depends on me, so it is very attractive to contemplate the murder of my alter ego.

It isn't one big thing that brings out these feelings, just an accumulation of tiny events. The most recent of these occurred today, on the message board. In the middle of an otherwise innocuous thread (about beverages, for Cthulhu's sake!) a douchebag laid in with a dig at Southerners, i.e. that we are stupid and lacking in taste. This sort of thing frosts me thoroughly.

Nobody is more aware of Southern flaws than a Southerner. We have our faults and shame, and we're aware of all of them. However, we are also the region which produced William Faulkner, Eudora Welty, Johnny Cash, Larry Brown, Hank Williams, Tennessee Williams and many other fine persons of letters. The asshole in question is from Wyoming, which has produced Dick Cheney.

I started to go off on his comment in a big way, but limited myself to one touchy, sans-namecalling post, and just added him to my list of People To Be Ignored. If I had responded as I wanted, I would have been banned, but that is not the reason I held back. The message board belongs to someone else, and I didn't want to stir up a mess at someone else's place. Even jerkish Southerners like myself strive to be polite.

Anyway, I'm still here for now, but if the end comes, I imagine it will come quickly. So, if you look for me on-line one day and I'm not to be found, you'll know what happened: I got fed up with dealing with the bastards and shot poor KentAllard through the head.


John Hornor Jacobs said...

I watched that one unfold, and I've got to say, you showed remarkable restraint.

I posted something nasty in my following comment about Brawndo, but then edited it out one minute later.

Just hit me with an email if you do decide to go guerrilla. I halfway want to just go in to that forum (and a couple of others I can think of), guns blazing, offend as many people as possible as quickly as I can. Fuck em.

But I won't. Yet.

KentAllard said...

Thanks for the comment (and thanks to those who e-mailed support). I was at my most pissed-off (and whining, and self-pitying) when I wrote that. I'm not goin' nowhere just now.

Curiously, I haven't received any comments defending Dick Cheney. I guess I just don't get a lot of readers in Wyoming.

Kent said...

Don't take it to heart, man. Hell, in the history of that board, that wasn't even a minor flare up. Heh.

Seriously, horror message boards attract assholes. Maybe it's the unearned sense of persecution so many horror readers seem to have. Or the narrow mindedness of the "I only read horror!" bunch.

At the end of the day, it's the internet and none of it amounts to anything at all.

KentAllard said...

Thanks, Kent. Yeah, it probably irritated me more than it should since I didn't have the catharsis of escalation (that new thesaurus is neat!). As bad as the "I only read horror" group is, I think they are outdone by the "I only read zombie" people, of which there are a surprising number.

John Hornor Jacobs said...

That's a fact, sir.

Kidding. Not wanting a tussle.

Kent said...

Ah, yeah. The strict zombie crowd. I used to find them annoying, but, in a rare moment of clarity, I came to understand that they are just silly.

A fact. Heh. Funny how the person who complained about us has been subsequently discouraged from posting at that board anymore by the management.

John Hornor Jacobs said...

Who's that?

And does that mean we're cool, Kent?

KentAllard said...

Someone actually complained about the F______stein thread? Holy cow. Just when I worry that I don't have a life because of the time I spend on-line, along comes something that trumps me. Why in hell would anyone not involved in that be bothered by it?

Kent said...

Of course, John. No big deal.

As for the person who lodged the complaint, I guess I'm not supposed to know who it was, but I found out. Again, no big deal. I was a little baffled as to why anyone took the complaint against us seriously, all things considered, but, hey, life is funny. And the web is just crazy.

John Hornor Jacobs said...

You're killin' me ovah heah.


KentAllard said...

It's probably not wise to post the name publicly, since it's not supposed to be common knowledge. Usually in these things, if you really want to know, there are enough clues to figure it out.

Kent said...


But if you scroll around the threads over there, you might be able to narrow it down and make a good guess.

And then leave it at that. The board over there doesn't need any more drama than it already gets.

Anonymous said...

I don't know where this happened and so didn't see it go down, but I know just what you're talking about. People not from here talking shit without having a clue. Sure, there are ignorant people here in the south, but there are ignorant people everywhere. We sure as hell don't have a monopoly on that. To generalize about a whole region that way is about as dumb as it gets.

Jim Mcleod said...

Hey Kent, long time no chat. What an arse mr 42 is, was

KentAllard said...

Jim! A long time indeed. I imagine the baby is keeping you pretty busy.