The Grass is Always Greener Online

I sit, slightly hunched, barely awake, and lacking enthusiasm. There is a classic staring match between the glowing computer screen and my eyes. I begin to tap the keys in no orderly fashion. One semester of keyboarding in high school hardly qualifies me as a typist. Just like an outing for happy hour, my tabs begin to add up quickly. They form an uniformed row at the top of the computer screen, reminding me I am guilty of way too much virtual insanity. In no particular preference I begin my visits. Gmail. AOL. Facebook. Twitter. Blogger. All accessories to the crime of procrastination. All vampires sucking the blood from the neck of time. Errr...that may be a little too much of an analogy. Still, you get my point — being online is draining.

I ponder. What kind of day will today be? Will I share all the great news sent through not-so-greatly crafted  pitches from companies in the form of an email? Will I talk about the never-ending adventures my son takes me on each day? Perhaps I'll talk about how I can't wait until Friday arrives...Sunday through Thursday. I may even lurk on a few sites without leaving my footprint or any evidence that I made an appearance that day. I have complete control over what I share, how I share it, and the exact time I want to share it. Control freak much? Not really. It's just the way the online world operates.

Let me go all "analogy" on you for a bit.

I wake-up in the morning and open the shades (I sit at the desk and sign onto the computer). It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood, a little sunshine with minor clouds (I have tons of emails to read, but some are filled with great opportunities). I peep through the window at my community (I log onto several social networking sites) and notice my neighbors are awake too (My timelines and feeds are flooded with chatter). I have this one neighbor who constantly makes a lot of noise early in the morning (Talks a lot, but isn't really saying much). I have another neighbor who provides a daily chuckle or two (Makes me smile and laugh when it's much needed). And then there is the neighbor who annoys the heck out of everyone. (S)he is volunteers for every school, community, and social event possible. In fact, (s)he's perfect (It seems like her/his world is perfectly round, just like the "peachy" life they live).

This perfect neighbor has the best view in the community (Knows all the right people, highly connected). Their children are perfect and only indulge in the finest things in life (All their meals are freshly prepared, they would never stop at McDonald's). Their cars are shiny, hair is too (Look at me please, notice me please). And of course, their landscaping looks like it came out the pages of magazine (The grass is really, really green).

I always hear arguing coming from their house, but (s)he insists everything is fine (Posts an update on Facebook about how the day is not going great, but this cup of coffee sure is delicious). (S)he is so put together in those pictures (Everything comes with a price). When (s)he is not invited to an event, (s)he pretends they had plans that night anyway (Oh, you got that campaign too? So did I, but I turned it down). (S)he is head of the welcoming committee in the community. You know, to make everyone feel welcomed and invited (Smile in your face, stab you in the back...with a screen shot of course). Busy as a bee, must be a really important person (I have tons of emails. Did I tell you most of them are junk?). Who wouldn't want to be just like this? The manicured lawn. The curb appeal. The picturesque displays. The green grass grows all around, all around. Or does it?

We all have weeds growing on our lawn. Some choose to get rid of them by employing the best product or person to 'cover-up' the flaws. Others choose to deal with one obstacle at a time, cutting the weeds with our own tools — just deal with them when they arrive again.

Some people go to such great lengths to water their lawn, even in the rainiest of storms, for fear it will turn brown. Little do they know, too much watering can cause flooding and eventually the mess that lies beneath will be revealed. No one will want to leave a trace or a footprint in your lawn for fear of muddying their own image. The association is not worth the risk.

So, as I, you, WE sit at the computer and think of something clever to post, remember that it's okay to be yourself. There is nothing wrong with having a gorgeous front lawn. The fault lies in those that refuse to play, live, and dirty up the backyard for the sake of being  discovered. It may be no ones business at all what you choose to do on your own property, or say on your computer for this instance. But the fact of the matter is, you invited everyone to admire your lawn the minute you came to the neighborhood.

And if your grass is truly that green, at least be willing to share how you got it to look so great. For now, I'll just watch the dandelions sprout in random places across my lawn. The children will trample them in due time...and I'll update my Facebook status when it happens.

Green grass stock photo by
Dandy Lions stock photo by

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