By Rachel Birdsell
TFW Contributing Writer
This week’s column is part two of my tirade about the love-hate relationship I have with the Internet. Last week I griped about commenters; today I’m going to have a piss party about my pet Internet peeves. That’s a plethora of P’s.
On one hand (the large hand), I’d love for the Internet to be a community of civility and rationalism where perfect grammar reigns supreme, rather like a staid Englishman whose very accent instills a sense of propriety. On the small hand, I enjoy the wild, crazy sensationalism that is the Internet … in tiny doses. Unfortunately, the small hand has somehow overtaken the large hand, and it’s beating the holy hell out of it.
I’m probably preaching to the choir, since TFW readers are amazingly intelligent, but I still feel the need to get this off my chest. I’m sure you’ll indulge me, or you’ll just flip or scroll to the next page.
Here, in no particular order, are my top Internet pet peeves (or at least the ones I can squeeze into 750 words):
1. Misspelled words. Mourning sex is the best sex! There’s no excuse for you to misspell words. I don’t care if you’re a poor speller. I don’t care if you dropped out of school at the age of 14 so you could realize your dream of selling crack door-to-door. Spell check is everywhere. Use it. Use it like a $2 whore on dollar night unless you want there to be some doubt as to how much you like to get it on at funerals.
2. Using words incorrectly: I’d rather be punched in the nuts then kiss Donald Trump. See? It really does matter.
3. The inability to use entire words: That skirt is totes adorbz! It looks so presh on you! It would just look awk on me! I don’t know why speaking this way requires the use of so many exclamation points, but it does, which makes me want to slap the user — both for using such horrible language and for being so insufferably perky.
4. Damn lies. The reason you wear a ring on your third finger is because it’s the only finger with a vein to the heart. Lies are the herpes of the Internet. They’re everywhere, but nobody wants to admit they spread them. If you find yourself saying, “No effin’ way” after reading a particular item, research and find out if it’s factual before you infect the rest of the Internet with it.
5. Being indecisive as to what case you want to use. I aM a SuPeR, sPaRkLy, sPeCiAl PrInCeSs! It took me five minutes to type that. I don’t know how people do this. Do you have a special keyboard that allows you to tYpE lIKe ThIs? Also, what’s the appeal in tYpInG lIKe tHis? Is it some special code I don’t know about? Are you trying to look drunk?
6. Abusing periods. Shut.the.front.door. It makes it seem like you’re having a lot of trouble breathing, and I’m left wondering if I should bring you an inhaler.
7. Stop making up names to use as insults, e.g. Libtard, Repuglican, Faux News, Newt Gingrich. This is seen most in arguments involving politics or religion. It’s juvenile and undermines any valid point you may be making. Wait, Newt is his real name? Color me embarrassed.
8. Using a language that isn’t a language. lol lawd dey way 2 old 4 all dat! Dey makin foolz demsefs dun dat sheit lolz! I have no idea what I just typed. Are there made-up interpreters for made up languages?
9. Don’t be so literal. I literally sneezed twice, and then literally wiped my nose. While not technically improper, because those events actually occurred as stated, it is unnecessary and is literally way overused.
10. Refusing to let a catchphrase die. I just threw up in my mouth a little. You know how to tell if a certain phrase is over? When your grandma starts using it.
And this brings us to the end of my diatribe. Thank you for the indulgence. I feel so much better for getting that out of my system. If you have a pet peeve about the Internet, let me know in the comments (on the online version, of course) or via email. That is, as long as you’re not breaking one of the above rules.
Rachel Birdsell is a freelance writer, artist and semiprofessional cat wrangler. Feel free to drop her a note at firstname.lastname@example.org