So this comes from something my wife has been trying to ingrain in my brain since the year we got together/married. I remember being out with some younger friends of ours (I mean like they were 19, 20 or so, and I was 27) at an UNO or someplace in South Portland. I used to jam with some pop punk friends that had a band called, THE LEFTOVERS (Great stuff, you should go look them up! doh, links! THE LEFTOVERS)
Anyways, Adam’s girlfriend, Lindsay was sitting near me and she ordered something I thought sounded disgusting (either something with spinach or artichoke or both, idk) and I made some dumb comment, like “gross’ or something. It was stupid. I was still a child (at 27, yes, I know. How do you think my wife felt?) That was the first time she played the “Don’t yuck someone else’s yum” card.
Over the years, she’s always worked hard to instill this idea into our three kiddos, too (to mild success).
I started using Facebook back in 2010 and Twitter a while after that. One of the things I see time and time again is someone expressing their love for something always, ALWAYS someone who feels the need to tell them what they love sucks, and it sucks for reasons a. or a, b, and c.
I have been guilty of yucking yums for years (despite my wife’s constant reminders). And I’ve done it a lot. I’m fucking 42. I should know better.
As a horror writer mingling among all the other indie-horror writers and reviewers, it’s so tempting to voice my opinion. And many, many, many times, I have. Usually, if the author of the book being heaped with sugary sweet praise is already established and I know (or think) my little ding against them won’t hurt them or their sales.
Whether that’s the case or not, why do I feel compelled to do this? Is it something nasty like envy or jealousy? I’m sure that’s in there somewhere (only human), but there’s also just a matter of having a different taste than the author or reviewer.
What I’ve been noticing the last month or two is I’ll start to type up my well, i don’t think… and then, I’ll stop. I ask myself, “What is this going to accomplish?” or “Why am I yucking someone else’s yum?”
I’ve even started to start scrolling past these things that tempt me. Someone is excited about movie “X” or band “Y” and for the most part, I’ve kept my opinions to myself. The last one I can think of was having to do with my buddy Brian Fatah Steele’s love of a certain indie pop-rock band that I shall not name. We were at least able to turn that into a running joke that (I think) we both think is funny.
(By the way, check out Brian’s excellent cosmic horror book, CELESTIAL SEEPAGE)
I noticed I’d stopped myself a number of times in a row and thought, “wow, this feels much better.” I don’t wind myself up or the person that was just trying to tell us what they enjoyed, and just like that, there’s a little less negativity in the world.
New Year’s is coming up soon. The time for those pesky resolutions that we kind of sorta mean. How about his. Why don’t we try to show a little more restraint this year and let people love what they love? Obviously, if you’re a reviewer, it’s part of your job to tell what you think, but for the rest of us…let’s see if we can live and let live in this wild social media world.
If you ain’t got nothin’ good to say, don’t say anything at all.
Don’t yuck someone else’s yum.
Stay positive and keep scrolling (not trolling).
Also, this is a happy little video from THE LEFTOVERS for ya. Happy Tuesday!