An open letter to back-to-school photo haters on Facebook
If you've peeked at Facebook this week (and who hasn't) you've probably seen lots of first-day-of-school pics... 'tis the season. Unfortunately, it's also the season when the "Face-Jerks" come out to play. For every sweet picture of a kiddo with a new backpack getting on the bus, there's a hater that complains that back-to-school pictures are "ruining their newsfeed."
Yeah... these people probably hate cute puppies and kittens, too.
I say they need to get over themselves.
This week marked the first day of school for my kids. In other parts of the country, school started last week, and in some places school starts next week or maybe even the week after.
First day of school pics are "a thing." They’ve always been a thing, even before social media allowed our everyday details to be instantly shared with hundreds of people. That's right. Before Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat, people took pictures of their kids' first day of school. They were placed in albums, frames and sometimes in those three-dimensional photo cubes — remember those? It’s okay if you don't.
If you have school-aged kids, you take pictures of their first day of school. You share them on the Internet: standing on your porch with new clothes, new shoes and new backpacks; boarding the school bus; with their new teacher, who manages to smile brightly in spite of the fact that seven parents in a row asked her to pose with a small human she just met.
It's a parent thing.
I'm a little sick and tired — no, make that very sick and tired of the naysayers bitching about the “flood of kid pictures” in their news feed or moaning about being “overwhelmed” by the amount of back-to-school snaps. Go find a non-parent right now and ask them to cite a pet peeve about their parent friends. “All those annoying back-to-school pictures” will probably make the list.
I get that my kid's brand new Star Wars lunchbox isn't big news for everyone. I understand that the sentiment I attach to my babies starting kindergarten isn't shared by all. I know my overzealous Instagramming on the first day of school isn't interesting for every single person I'm connected to on social media.
But let me put it to you this way: there are a crap ton of things I see on social media that “don’t apply to me” that I don't spend my time and energy complaining about.
1. Fantasy football, fantasy baseball or any sport preceded by the word fantasy
If you partake in fantasy miniature golf or badminton, whatever. I'll snicker and roll my eyes. I might even give your status update a like because I'm nice like that.
2. Your opinion on the NFL draft, March Madness or the Stanley Cup
If I want to know about sports highlights, I watch ESPN or ask my husband, but do you see me whining about “too much basketball stuff” in March? No.
3. Your ‘grams from "in da club" on a Thursday night
Yes, I get it. You’re young, unencumbered and hangovers don’t kick your ass like they do mine. Do I hate on your “look at me I’m having an awesome time in high heels eating food not called chicken nuggets” status updates? No. I don’t.
4. Your status updates about your Jamberry nail stuff, belly-shrinking wrap thingies, 3-D mascara or “executive cookware” parties
There are plenty of people out there who like to kvetch about direct sales in their newsfeed. I don't love seeing this, either, but if one of my friends' list is trying to make a few extra bucks or score some free makeup, is that hurting me? No.
We are all guilty of over-saturating our news feed with something now and then… or maybe every day. Social media is an extension of our lives and a way to share what’s important to us right now — whether that's starting school, dog poop on the floor or beer pong.
How about exercising some options besides complaining? Unfollow. Unfriend. Hide updates. Or, just turn the other freakin' cheek to something that makes someone else happy that you don’t happen to care about.
And to all of you out there complaining about there being “too many cute kid pictures?” Please. Your mama probably took pictures of you too. They probably made her happy. And if that doesn't offer you any comfort, there is light at the end of the tunnel:
It’s a little thing called pumpkin spice.
For those of you who need to plan what you're going to be bitching about by this time next month, you’re welcome. And seriously, if you don't like my kid pictures, don't look.