I recently made a purchase at Amazon.com. After the process of submitting my credit details, confirming the delivery address, and sending off the order, I was informed by a little box in the upper right hand corner of the screen that I could tell other people via Facebook, Twitter, or email that I had just purchased X.
I was quite fazed by this. What is this modern compulsion to tell the world what you are doing at any moment? Is it because of a misplaced sense of one’s own importance? Or because (at the opposite end of the ego scale) a feeling that one’s own existence can only be confirmed by the recognition of others? And why would anyone else care?
I have always had great abhorrence of people (I’m thinking especially of official types like college presidents) who gaze out at their audience from an auditorium platform and coyly state that they have “something to share” with us. When really they just want to tell us something. I have always been tempted to shout out, “Then give me half of your chocolate cake!”
So, I have desisted from sharing with you the details of my recent purchase.
Besides, I’ve eaten it all myself.