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play nice

sytycd is one of my favorite things about summer. i remember watching this particular dance last year, and although it wasn't my favorite number of the season and i'd never heard the song before, these lyrics kinda stuck in my brain

'it's so easy to hate, it's so easy to laugh, it takes strength to be gentle and kind'

(listen to the whole song here, originally performed by the smiths)

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that concept rings so true. 
both for who we are in our face-to-face interactions and for how we represent ourselves online. 

i'll admit - i've had bad days, i've been in pissy moods, i've been a little more mean-spirited than i probably should have been when commenting on a blog post or article i don't agree with. 

but you know what? 

when the internet was all fresh + new + slow fifteen years ago, i think the thrill of complete anonymity was part of its charm. it was a new world, a new way to escape from the everyday stresses of life. 

and people dove into chat rooms (and other now-horribly-outdated terms) headfirst, eager for a way to connect with others at the speed of light dial up.

but the internet is (obviously) vastly different these days. so much so that the appeal of and the want to be anonymous has all but vanished. 

nearly all of the most successful blogs out there have a face. not an anonymous handle. people are sharing extremely personal stuff because that's what readers want. and that's what keeps people coming back. 

with the blogs i love + frequent, i almost feel like i know them. like we could split a bottle of wine and talk all night if it came down to it.

they chose to put themselves out there on the big, bad internet, sure, but commenters also have a choice.* 

that's why i'm making an effort. choosing to have the guts to be gentle + kind.

i say stick with the crowds you like online. 

surround yourself with things that make you happy; not stuff that will ruffle your feathers.

and ignore the rest.

img created by me

let's see if we can make the internet a nicer place.

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*trust me, i can snark + jab with the best of em, so i'm preaching to myself here as well. and idk if it's me getting older or what, but i've been trying to rid any sense of negativity from my life as i look to start a new one with the boy. this seems like an easy start.

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