Monday, June 20, 2005


The Aurora Borealis, crop circles and the mass extinction of dinosaurs 65 million years ago are more easily explained than the phenomenon of instant messaging.

My kids can be next door to a friend, and instead of walking outside and talking over the fence (Dad, the sun is sooo hot!) they'll chat for hours on IM.

For hours. To the kid next door.

A phone conversation would only take a minute or two, yet they choose to type into a cold, unfeeling computer program which whisks each message across the ether and simultaneously removes every bit of emotion, nuance and meaning. All the smiley faces in the world won't truly convey the message or emotion of the spoken word. No wonder we're always mad at each other.

For example, the following sentence can be taken a number of ways:

"How many times has he warned you about fixating on sheep?"

First it could be asking how MANY times. Or, how many times has HE warned you. Or, how many times has he warned YOU. Or, about FIXATING on sheep. Or, fixating on SHEEP.

See? Different emphasis. A phone call would make the message crystal clear; you are wasting your time on sheep when goats are perfect replacements. Yet, we continue to be confused by things we should be completely clear about.

I am growing tired of terms like LOL. Look, LOL means 'laugh out loud.' If you didn't laugh out loud, don't type LOL. Okay?

ROFLMAO means 'rolling on the floor laughing my ass off.' Can we agree it would be difficult to reach the keyboard from the floor? So you weren't rolling anywhere, were you?

I suggest new, more appropriate acronyms:

CHUCKLE - Chuckle
STHWWS - Slight Tee Hee With Wry Smile
IFWYJSPFA - I Found What You Just Said Pretty Freaking Amusing (substitute the F if you wish)
OTWFIAPSOW - Okay That Was Funny In A Perverse Sort Of Way
TMPSOOMN - That Made Pepsi Shoot Out Of My Nose
YMMLSHIPAL - You Made Me Laugh So Hard I Peed A Little

Sure, those will take longer to type, but at least you won't be lying. I want real honesty in my IMs.



Kerouaced said...

We just might need abbreviatins for your abbreviations...

Weary Hag said...

Oh Dave, YACMU.
(if those need clarification, let me know, but please don't be rolling on any floors when you ask)

The only good thing about sending an instant message as opposed to the chat over the fence is being able to intermittently pick your nose, scratch your nuts, pass gas or enjoy a stogie without persecution.

Angie said...

I met my husband on the net ... it all began with messenger. I can't agree with you on the part about stripping emotions, nuance and meaning.

OldHorsetailSnake said...

Well, I can't use any of your abbreviations because I drink Coke.

(P.S. I don't have any Smileys. What is signified by two polar bears copulating? I got a lot of those.)

Amandarama said...

Well that made me GUIHH (giggle until I had the hiccups).

I hope you're happy.


Lightning Bug's Butt said...

Dave, the only thing more amusing to look at through the window would be a naked chick taking a shower.

Great idea with the acronyms. I was always suspicious of the "LOL" thing myself. I'm fond of "IMO" and "BTW." Timesavers.

Dave Morris said...

Ker, I will start working on those!

Carol, I got the first one, but SGIFYB lost me. Can ya help a guy out??

Dear, dear Angie. You've given me pause - I will have to rethink things now. I suppose it's not the same experience for everybody. And GOOD for you, by the way.

Hoss, the only thing better than the Polar Bear animations would be Coyotes-Licking-Themselves line.

Amanda, I'm proud to have made you giggle. Reading your blog, I would imagine it would be a difficult task, after seeing how damn funny you are.

LBB, I am not at all opposed to timesavers. IMHO, they make us more efficient.

Rob Seifert said...

CHUCKLE... STHWWS I had a roommate once, shocking I know, and we had our computers set up in the living room of the house (a true geek fest). We sat maybe 3 feet from each other and spent more time chatting via IM than we ever did talking. We found it easier to multitask talking via IM than doing so verbally. Boggles the mind...


Weary Hag said...

So glad I found your blog.

And, by the way, truer words were never spoken ... except the time I called my first husband a maggot ridden turd.

Ghost Dog said...

Apologies to the Pythons:

Look, if he was laughing, he wouldn't bother to carve "LOL". He'd just laugh.