We've all scrolled through our Facebook news feed and found ourselves reading updates from "friends" who seem to be having the "BEST DAY EVER!!!" seven days a week, 365 days a year. In fact, I've noticed that a healthy handful of people consider Facebook a place for them to constantly tell the world how absolutely fabulous their lives are. They might as well have rebranded the social networking site we know and love as "Bragbook."
Now, good things happen to all of us, and at times we want to share those good things with the community at large. Inviting others to experience your joy along with you is a beautiful gesture. However, I'm not talking about that. What I'm referring to are the Facebook users who make it their sole goal to let you know how amazing their life is in comparison to yours. I call these people "Facebook terrorists."
The Facebook terrorist's reign of terror manifests as incessant bragging. Not a day goes by that they don't use their overly joyous proclamations of their wonderful existence to wreak havoc on the self-esteem of those of us who are having a "so-so" day. According to the Facebook terrorist, the sun is always shining on them, every day is a holiday, and they shit bars of pure gold. They will never post about how the stress of losing their job horrifically triggered their irritable bowel syndrome and caused them to leave their very own Jackson Pollack all over the Starbucks bathroom; how they went to battle with a cockroach the size of a developing country in their apartment and lost; or how they recently got dumped for someone twice their size whose breath smells like hickory-smoked sausage. No, instead they opt to post, "Off to Bali!! Third vacation this year!!!"
Listed below are merely a few of the categories of Facebook braggart. If you know any of the following culprits, please use caution when dealing with them, as they tend to be highly into themselves and may not notice when you are choking, drowning or in need of immediate medical attention.
The Work Bragger: These are the Facebook users who love to brag about work and post things like, "Booked it!" "Got it!" or, "Nailed it!" With a large swath of the country dealing with unemployment, no one wants to be reminded that they didn't get the job interview or audition, let alone the actual job. There might be a better way to share your employment status than by posting, "On a roll! I actually have to turn down jobs!" "Wish I could also be lazy and enjoy the sunshine, but as usual, I have to work," or the worst: "Who booked three national commercials in one week and has two thumbs? THIS GUY!!!"
The Relationship Bragger: These are the Facebook users who act like they don't see their significant other every single day or have access to a phone, constantly posting personal love letters on a very impersonal, public website. Hey, instead of posting about how your significant other is the most amazing person who ever roamed the Earth, why not just walk the 20 feet to the kitchen and whisper those same sweet nothings into his or her ear? The main objective of this person's status update is to let you know that no matter how much you may love the special person in your own life, you've just been outdone, because they love theirs more. Of course, these relationships usually end in an equally public disaster.
The Body Bragger: These are the Facebook users who spend the majority of their day at the gym, leaving barely enough energy in their carbohydrate-deprived bodies to post status updates, but they still manage to post about their workout or their diet or upload yet another picture of their chiseled physique. Though I wholeheartedly disagree, word on the street is that I am a member of this group. [Clears throat and fidgets uncomfortably.] In any case, you can spot my fellow narcissists by photo updates in which we wear only a pair of underwear, a strategically placed leaf or a poetically draped American flag.
The Death Bragger: This is a small but powerfully annoying group of Facebook users who like to capitalize on others' demise. When someone famous dies, they will overload your news feed with posts about how they knew the now-dead person, worked with the now-dead person, or bumped into the now-dead person in a CVS while reaching for an enema bag and a Charleston Chew. Some even go so far as to dust off the old scanner to post a picture with said now-dead person from the year that flashbulbs were invented. They love to wax poetic over the dead in grandiose statements about life, in essence making the person's passing all about them.
The Religious Bragger: This Facebook user is the worst, in my opinion. These people are much too "humble" to let you know how fantastic they are, so they let God say it for them. They often post things like, "Truly anointed," or, "Blessed and highly favored." What they really mean is that God likes them better than you. The rest of us, innocently going about our normal, everyday lives, are unfortunately lower on the "favored" list and therefore shit out of luck. If by chance you yourself find that you're having such a holy, spiritual experience, try keeping it sacred and personal, unless of course you believe that it's God's will that you brag about your many blessings to the entire cyber world. Then by all means, spread the word.
A version of this blog post originally appeared on Queerty.com.
Follow John Carroll on Twitter: www.twitter.com/MrJohnCarroll