You've all seen it in action, one minute your posting "YES" to a request to attend New York City's annual Santacon "convention" and the next minute there's a facebook ad for Santa suits on the right column of your wall. Or perhaps your bio lists you as a single father of one who likes cats and is a nudest at heart then BAM your page is highlighted with photo's of big breasted blonds tantalize you with promises of a better life, or at the very least pictures of herself.
I get it, believe me I do. The marketing masses that be are sucking up our social networking information. Voyeurism = Commerce. But what if it isn't part of your bio, what if you haven't released it onto your home page and STILL they know. Emails, search engines, youtube, flickr. How much can they get from an IP address?
This past summer I attended Burning Man for the 7th year in a row. If you know me, whether it be personally or cyberly, you are very much aware of this and some of you have grown tired of hearing about it. I have posted a general synopsis of this years experience but I have yet to write about the details.
So how is it Fox channel 5 is onto me? No, not Bill O'reilly or Fox news, but The Simpsons. When I caught a fall episode of Homer and the gang transforming into human eating zombies I grew very suspicious. Yes it was their Halloween "spooktackular" special and cannibalism certain is gory but why now? Why this year? The same year we Burning Man tribe mates dive into a delusional discussion on the benefits of eating Mark "Cooked" (aka the other, other white meat) and then institute a new camp theme of "Munchers" - Burners who eat human flesh, with our motto being "We Eat Orphans" (orphans being first time burners). Sounds crazy I know but it must also sound humorous or why else would Fox jump on it?
Not convinced? Okay, lets flip the channel to NBC....
Thursday nights episode of 30 Rock revolved around a new cast member. In search of fresh talent they hire an unknown Canadian actor who, until then, was working as a silver street performer. They called him Danny but all of us at Green Monkey Camp know he's playing the part of Jesse. Jesse, one half of the silver couple. Jesse, who has also done his fare share of street performing. The impostors physic was similar but he lacked the natural good looks, talent and charm of our Jesse. Their dastardly deed of comically cloning Jesse is in poor taste and down right despicable! "Hey NBC, get your own characters, Jesse is real and he's ours!"
Saturday afternoons typically involve some trivial babble left over from my work week. This Saturday I checked my inbox and uncovered a bitch slapping email from a client named "Mr. Jones." It infuriated me to the point where, in an effort to purge the poisonous venom from my system, I wrote a make believe response laced with a variety of obscenities. Although I didn't send this to Mr. Jones, I did forward it to Miss Pegged, a partner in crime and coworker.
Later that evening, half way through a "big bottle" of chardonnay, SNL punishes me, laps up my hate tainted attitude and resurrects Mr. Jones. He becomes the focus of a rude, crass, nonsensical Mr. Jones skit. With eyes glared all I could hear was "Mr. Jones, Mr. Jones, Mr. Jones."
To make matters worse, they end the skit with a rendition of Deep Purples,"Smoke on the Water." I despise that song, always have. For me hearing it is a lot like pouring salt in a wound, getting kicked in the ass, or stabbed in the heart. It was the same song Lynn Wolff used at our High Schools head majorette tryouts. The same song we twirlers listen to when forced to perform her monotonous routine over and over again.
At any given moment, there are tens of millions of people in more than 130 countries actively engaging in internet activity so why are they tapping into MY groove? Is my paranoia worsening or are online industries monitoring my wayward behavior and charting it to set social trends? If so, how long will it take before twirling becomes an Olympic sport and green monkey accessories are all the rage?
UPDATE... just off the press...
the same day that I sent my "is Porn a Four Letter Word" email, the big O had a shOw about woman and pOrn. Jenna was a guest.