Last year for Lent I gave up snarking. In response, my husband, my blog commenters, and even my literary agent deluged me with snark-worthy news stories, trying to get me to break my vow.
Now Snart writes: “Here it is Lent, and we haven’t asked if you’ve given up snarking this year. Sorry. Do let us know, so we can ‘help’ you along!”
The answer is no – I haven’t forsworn snarking. This year I’ve given up using my hands. It’s easier. Granted, with my arms tied behind my back the driving does get dicey. But I’m a whole lot less stressed out.
Nevertheless, vow or no vow, I am trying to avoid sarcasm. I want to become a kinder human being, and not make kittens cry, and avoid going to hell. As proof, here are recent stories I have not commented upon.
“Dawn Goes Lesbian.” For those in North America who still think the BBC broadcasts Jane Austen adaptations 24/7, brace yourselves. This documentary follows “Dawn, a girl-girl with a big love for men (‘as friends, lovers, boyfriends, anything!’) [who’s] prepared, for our sake, to thoroughly immerse herself in the lesbian life for a whole month.” The program was so hugely insulting, I can only beg the world’s lesbians: please don’t judge all us straight women by this twit. Thank God the Guardian‘s Anna Pickard, snark-maestra extraordinaire, live-blogged this one so I didn’t have to.
GOLDEN HILL, Md. — Contestant No. 1 sashayed down the catwalk, her hair bouncing in blonde curls, and smiled a radiant beauty-queen smile. She picked up a furry dead rodent about the size of a football.
Then she took out a very sharp four-inch blade and stuck the point in just above the animal’s tail.
“Then,” she said, narrating the incision as sweetly as a Miss America contestant talking about world peace, “you’re going to want to take your knife . . .”
It’s the Miss Outdoors 2008 pageant, which “combines the worlds of beauty contests and competitive muskrat skinning.”
” . . . You want to take your knuckles,” 17-year-old Samantha Phillips, Contestant No. 1, was saying. One of the pageant judges squinched up her face in shock. “And separate the meat from the hide, just like this.”
“Oh my God!” a boy in the audience yelled, at the sight of a woman in perfect makeup with her hand inside a muskrat.
Then, from another part of the crowd: an older woman’s voice: “She’s good.”
I repeat: I have not blogged about this.
Goodness has its limits, however, and the next story pushed me beyond mine: Language barrier scuppers walker.
A man who planned to walk from Bristol to India without any money has quit, after getting as far as Calais, France.
Mark Boyle, 28, who set out four weeks ago with only T-shirts, a bandage and sandals, hoped to rely on the kindness of strangers for food and lodging.
But, because he could not speak French, people thought he was free-loading or an asylum seeker.
He now plans to walk around the coast of Britain instead, learning French as he goes, so he can try again next year.
Mr Boyle, a former organic food company boss, belongs to the Freeconomy movement which wants to get rid of money altogether.
In Boyle’s freeconomy, generosity apparently begins with gimme. And so the Blanche DuBois walking tour grinds to a halt.
He forgot that give-and-take should involve more than taking. Well, I’m happy to give it to him.