It’s no big secret that people love their pets. Americans alone spend roughly $41 billion a year on them, so obviously people are a little attached. But why? Pets have all but lost their original usefulness, the reasons we domesticated them in the first place. If someone has a mouse problem they call an exterminator, they don’t run out and buy a cat. Dogs are still used in hunting, but only some dogs and only by some people, generally in the South. It seems that our symbiotic relationship with our pets has turned into a parasitic one. Is this the case?
“No! Bad kitty! No leeching off your owners. That is a bad kitty!”
If you ask any pet owner they’ll list off a number of reasons why they have their animals, but they all boil down to the same key points: They want the companionship, they want to feel wanted, and they want to be loved. Essentially they want to be in a committed relationship. Owning a pet and being in a romantic relationship are basically the same thing.
Think about it this for a moment:
- You accept them into your life with the understanding that you will help take care of them (the basis of every friendship).
- You either enjoy being with them and decide to continue having them in your life, or you don’t like them and move on to the next one.
- You begin noticing their strengths and flaws more, but their growing on you. Eventually the flaws lose their edge, until a day comes when you can’t imagine them I without their flaws as it’s become a part of the appeal.
- Now you can’t picture your life without them. They’ve become such a large part of yourself that the idea of losing them pains you so much that you’d rather just not think about it at all.
- Then, they’re gone. By some means or another, they’re no longer a part of your life. You get depressed and miss them terribly. If you could have one wish right now, it would be to bring them back. Nothing else would even cross your mind.
- You begin going about your life. You get over the immediate sadness, but it still hurts when you remember them. It may be too soon for some of you, but most of you will have already moved on, ready to try again.
Now, what was I describing there? Being a pet owner? You’re right. Did you guess falling in love? You’re also right. When taken for their parts, the two ideas are nearly identical.
Most people associate it more with familial love, calling themselves “Mommy” or “Daddy” when referring to their relationship. Family love, however, has always been considered unconditional love. Owning a pet has conditions. A parent can’t choose what color their child’s hair will be, or whether they will be playful, or if they’re already potty-trained. The only choice available is to have the baby or not, which is the same choice for owning a pet and finding a mate.
So, what am I suggesting? Should every pet owner mark their status as “in a relationship” on Facebook? Is every married couple with a dog now a Polygamist? No. Well…. no, but it is a little weird when you think about it.
This doesn’t seem quite as cute and innocent anymore.
I’m merely suggesting an idea, hopefully something that made you think or at least killed a few minutes before you punch out and head home.
Just to be on the safe side though, if anyone ever asks if you’re an animal-lover, tell them, “No, I don’t love animals, but I do like them as friends.”
Life can get complicated. Anybody who has been alive can verify that statement. But while life is complex for everyone, it’s complexities vary from person to person. Some stress over what they’re going to wear in the morning, some wonder which of their possessions they’re going to have to sell to be able to buy their meth.
Mine have been mainly financial in nature. Specifically, most of the things that a majority of people would think they couldn’t live without, I’ve spent a majority of my life without. Some examples: A cell phone, a car, brand-name food and clothes, and the topic of this blog, the internet.
The internet, for those of you who don’t know, is the thing that’s currently in your face. It’s the life’s blood of the social networking media, the arch-nemesis of the newspapers, and a veritable superhighway for information. The internet has become the most important innovation of mankind in just a few short years. You don’t agree? If fire were never invented, but the internet was invented yesterday (please don’t ask me how), how long do you think it would take for fire to be invented? A year? A week? Sooner than that?
Think about it. The internet invented so many formulas it might as well be a Nobel Laureate in chemistry. Mentos + Diet Coke = soda super-soaker. Charlie Sheen + Coke (the drug this time) + Twitter = Guinness World Records. 2 Girls + 1 Cup = the dividing line between whether you rarely use the internet, or /b/ is one of your bookmarks. Cats + lols. Rick + Roll. Emoticons. L337 speak. Google. The list goes on and on.
Where do I fit into all of this? Well, to put it bluntly, I’ve never had my own internet access. Not since I was 15 and using AOL on my Dad’s dial-up, taking personality quizzes at TheSpark.com (now Sparknotes.com, which I’ve honestly never looked at since the switch.) My internet connection since then has come from a variety of places; work, friends houses, libraries, whatever shitty cell-phone I may have had at the time.
The internet can be a very scary place for a new user. Every meme ever created is essentially an inside joke exclusive to people who have a computer and internet access, so when you’re a first-timer jumping into the game it’s a little unnerving. Most of us spout gibberish on the first forum we come across. It inevitably gets shot down by the people who have been on the internet for more than a month, and everyone forgets about it soon as humanly possible.
Then there are people like me; The Lurkers. Almost 98% of my time on the internet has been spent observing. This was a trait thrust upon me more than anything else. What was the point of creating an account or responding to a thread when my ability to respond and follow up was shoddy at best?
Lurkers are given the unique position of being able to adapt to almost any given place on the internet. Give a Lurker enough time and they will be able to understand the etiquette and the core of any website and be able to respond as if he were always there…
Alright, I feel I’ve gotten a little verbose on the subject. Let me put it like this. I’m 26 years old, I just got a steady internet connection, and I’ve been lurking for years.
Why, you may ask, should I give half a fuck? Well, lurkers get a bad rap on most sites. People think we’re critics, always judging and never contributing. The truth is that we’re foreigners, entering a strange land that we have no knowledge of and all we want is to learn.
If you watch Patch Adams backwards, it’s about Robin Williams making happy people sick and depressed with his comedy.
So, my friend turned me on to these last night. We threw a couple at each other, and I thought this was the best one I came up with, so I posted it on here. I’m glad to see it made it on the page.
tumblrbot asked: WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE INANIMATE OBJECT?
My computer, hands down. I spend more time with my laptop than most parents do with their children. It follows me everywhere I go, like a faithful puppy. A faithful puppy with pictures of naked women taped to him.