Is it just me or is it getting all kinds of sappy round here?
Lately, I can’t seem to venture online without being broadsided by yet another heart-warming homily about how friends are like diamonds and sparkle in the sun, or love is like a washing machine and there’s always room for one more sock.
Honestly, you can’t turn around on Pinterest without bumping into some barely coherent poster urging you to be inspired and live your passion and capture your dreams.
I can’t capture my dreams. I’ve got British Gas coming to serve the boiler, three features to write, and then I’m going to watch Gossip Girl.
And have you ever seen The Notebook Twitter account? Gross. People keep retweeting it into my timeline, like some kind of saccharine-fuelled projectile vomit. “They say the world was built for two, only worth living if someone is loving you.”
It’s just wrong.
We’re all old enough to know this claptrap bears no relation to real life. Love breaks down, friendship is largely a function of geographic and social expedience, and most people can’t get through a day without at least one evil thought passing through their mind.
And most of us don't actually like the sentimental chit-chat. Not really. Honestly, if people talked like this in real life we’d cross the street to avoid them. Most of us would adopt a fake identity and move to South America, if necessary. Especially if we’re British. Sentimentality makes most British people itch. We like gentle sarcasm and Monty Python.
But online it’s a different story. On the Internet, we’re spouting the kind of sentiment that would make a Care Bear blush. What’s it all about?
Part of me wonders if it’s the recession. During tough times sentimentality is a useful way of smoothing out some of life’s rough edges, and reminding us that there are moments of beauty if you look for them.
But another (more cynical) part of me wonders if it’s just showing off. Look at my wonderful friends, my just-so status updates and my perfectly Instagram-ed photos. And look at my big, beating, sentimental heart that’s just brimming over with goodness. I’m such an awesome person.
What do you think?
Personally, I’m Northern. And while I like to think I'm generally a pretty good person, sometimes (just sometimes) the sentiment in my heart looks a bit more like this: