Writing and Expression From The Sunshine Coast

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Michael Mann

Michael Mann has 5 articles published.

Facing Up to Facebook, A Rant

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Like almost the whole planet, I’m always on Facebook. And what do I see? Post after post about Eminem, MGK, or people saying, “I’m cleaning my friends’ list.” I rarely post myself but I’m guilty of sharing to promote my interests, namely music, movies, or even, yes, a cat video, or something political.

I understand the concept of wanting to be heard, and as my friend says, “I have an opinion about opinions.” But 24/7 posts, pretty much 365, I mean really??? Don’t you have a life??? Family? Friends?

Don’t get me wrong, I am on FB constantly. But to me, if you are not a musician, designer, or actor, 24/7/365 posts should not be a thing.

If you are a musician, for instance, promotion is something I do feel deserves a lot of Facebook time. Small time or underground artists post a lot on my Timeline when a new album is coming out or they are going on tour. Andrew Raines AKA Don Orias recently made a post to promote a new album. The post said if a hundred likes were achieved, the new album would be made free for a limited time. As a huge fan, I jumped at the chance and not only “liked” the status, but shared the heck out of it. Eighty-eight likes were reached and Don Orias released Agony, his new album, for free on his Bandcamp site. This is important, if not vital promotion for an underground artist as it is a good way to gain new fans.

But when you are not an artist, musician, or actor, non-consequential posts, like trolling or what team won what game, are not needed. And what the heck is the deal about watching concerts through a cell phone on Facebook Live? Most of the time the sound is so bad I can’t even hear the words. If it were me, I would just use my cell for selfies with the artist and that’s it. Put the phone away! Record the concert in your mind’s eye and experience the epicness 100 per cent!

But yes, I have dabbled in small time posts once in a while. Guilty as charged. For example I posted about apple crumble and Law and Order recently, so no, I’m not immune. Really all that does is make you the one person dying to be the centre of attention. Got a dog? Play with him or her. Having a baby? Get the beep off your phone! Times such as these are for your eyes only. Love and cherish them.

Rant over.

 

Snapshot: Mickey

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Hi. My name is Mickey. I’m a sixteen-year-old kitty at the Sunshine Coast S.P.C.A. I’m a big black hunk who loves a lap.

Having a tough day? Let me purr it all away. Don’t let my appearance fool you. I’m going to be around for a while. I could really use a new set of digs. I’m no prob with other cats or with dogs as I love everyone. Just give me love, special yummy food, and the occasional med and I’m good to go.

They treat me nice at the S.P.C.A., yet I know that someone out there could use my special set of skills. Some say I’m the most affectionate cat they’ve ever met. I love harder than a puppy or a kitten and can make you feel like Number One, because let’s face it you are Number One. I look into your eyes and plead, “Take me home.” I heard that the S.P.C.A had waived my adoption fee and maybe something can be arranged about vet fees (oh joy).

I know they’ll be sad to see me go, but I deserve a home. You’ll love me, I’m pawsitive.

(Mickey’s story transcribed by Mike Oswald)

Opinion: Separated by a TV Screen

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Hearing that Roseanne Barr had gone on a racist tirade on Twitter brought forth in me an automatic response. I called her an ugly person with an ugly soul. I had and have no real reason to say such a thing, but in my haste to feel morally superior to this person, who in all truth I know not, I rushed to judgement. To be honest, that puts me not farther from her but in her shoes. With zero knowledge of the exact circumstances I cannot make informed choices or judgements. I would need to sit down with Roseanne and put aside all my negative preconceptions and ask my questions. Will I get that chance? No. Therefore all I can truly say is I don’t agree and leave it at that.

I find the essence of Trump era America to be jumbled, yet focused. While celebrities such as Roseanne Barr support Donald’s ideology, others like Eminen are dead set against it. I, as a white male, age 25 to 40, am not a Trump fan. However for me to spew vitriol at the man, when we are separated by not only a tv screen but a country is foolish. Yes I still find myself doing it. Getting back to the first point, racism in America has always been a problem. Yet it has gone up exponentially since Trump’s win in 2016. The ideas of tribalism have also increased. People are somewhat obsessed, either one way or the other, myself included. If the damage to America is truly to be repaired, acts such as March for Our Lives, the MeToo movement, and capturing racism and police violence on the screens of Smart Phones must continue. If people want to intervene in a bad situation, they must not let radical idealism come between them and a peaceful solution.

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