A Complaint on Complaining

My routine, often avoided when I’m not at work, of pouring over social media that is quick to deliver updates/thoughts from friends, acquaintances, and people I don’t even know displays an apparent and common thread: complaints are often brief and without rhyme or reason. To be fair I don’t expect a soliloquy in iambic pentameter rhapsodizing the flaws in the character of a beer, comic-book, or movie or on the choices/lifestyles of other humans. However we should demand evidence that isn’t based on piss-poor anecdotes or obvious subjectivity. It needs to register on a common and empathic level. Perhaps people complain for the sake of complaining. It makes them feel good to bitch and moan, catharsis at the expense of others. I challenge that being informed and then complaining is more fulfilling. It enhances the argument and improves one’s critical thinking. It’s really simple to do a quick study/research on the thing that is to be complained. My goal isn’t just to complain about something (for example Madmen) but rather to understand the nature of “it” and then rationalize the critique. Sure I can be off, sure I might get stuck on something, but it remains thought-out and always open to be engaged.

We can disagree. It’s a beautiful thing to come to an argument with different opinions and ideas, of which are rooted in a firm base of reality and with a broad world-view.  So who gets it right? In my opinion, Guttersniper employs his knowledge of comicdom and graphic design to effectively tackle subjects at hand. Perpetual memory loss takes history and facts to create informed opinions. Weak complaints are filled with obvious bias, sentimentality, and plain ignorance.

Then again, maybe it is the nature of being behind a screen and computer and across miles of digital information and lines. We can shoot off a two sentence complaint and move-on to the next thing. Content in being self-possessed, our attention need not dwell, free to wander, and free to enjoy superficial evaluations.

You will see me any morning in the park
Reading the comics and the sporting page.
Particularly I remark
An English countess goes upon the stage.
A Greek was murdered at a Polish dance,         75
Another bank defaulter has confessed.
I keep my countenance,
I remain self-possessed
Except when a street piano, mechanical and tired
Reiterates some worn-out common song         80
With the smell of hyacinths across the garden
Recalling things that other people have desired.
Are these ideas right or wrong?

-Portrait of a Lady, T.S. Eliot

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3 Comments

Filed under essays, fun

3 responses to “A Complaint on Complaining

  1. The stuff you said is complete fucking bullshit. I hate this blog.

  2. Thanks for the shout out. I really believe that for criticism to be more than complaining, you have to be empathetic, succinct and willing to be proven wrong. If you like or dislike something, you should be able to say why that is beyond just a, “It sucked/was awesome.” Thanks for the shout-out, too.

  3. pml

    Well this is news to me, I pretty much thought I was just talking shit to talk shit. Looks like it’s back to the drawing board for me now.

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