14/11/2016
Just… Can’t… Unfollow…

Words by

Alyce Cowell

Remember when Being Lara Bingle was on TV? Now those were the days. We’d all drive around Bondi in LB’s black Jeep (that she wasn’t actually licensed to drive), and sympathise when she’d forget to check her mail for ten years. 

“C’mon Larzy, your license renewal notice was in your letterbox the whole time!!!!!!” we’d lovingly yell at her perfect blonde lob.

It was the most riveting television since having the TV completely turned off but I loved her and I loved it and so I watched it EVERY. SINGLE. WEEK. Sometimes, during my lower moments, I’d even watch it on the Channel 10 website to catch up, in the unlikely event that I was doing something more important that week and missed the ep.

I remember when the show aired, absolutely everyone had an opinion about my imaginary friend LB. From teenage girls to corporate dads, no one was quite sure what Lara did, but they’d decided – very passionately, I might add – whether they loved her or loathed her. 

We were suddenly experienced TV producers, skilled at knowing what the viewers want… kind of like when Australian Idol started and we all suddenly used words like ‘pitchy’ and ‘flat’ to review the performances.

Everyone was talking about it. We just couldn’t look away. We loved hating on poor, unlicensed, perfect-lob LB.

Fast forward to 2016, where we have futuristic technologies like 'selfie lights' and 'Snapchat'. We’re experiencing these symptoms all over again. 

Be honest: who do you follow on social media that spikes your blood pressure, but you just can’t seem to press that little green button to unfollow?

Maybe it’s a fashion blogger you watch on Snapchat, who could possibly be the most annoying person on the planet, but you still watch their entire story. 

Hey guys! Look who I’ve found sitting front row… even though you don’t know who they are!! Mwah mwah mwah kiss giggle pout 

Or maybe it’s someone from school – who you haven’t spoken to since year 11 biology – that posts Facebook statuses so dull, you don’t dare imagine their actual real-life life:

Just went to the servo, Magnums were on special so I bought two for later. PS. I’m boring

OK, I added that last part in but on a serious note, it seems to have gotten even worse since Snapchat, and now, Insta Stories became a thing. We can hear people’s annoying voices that are nothing like we’d pictured, and it turns out they’re a bit socially awkward and can talk for a really long time. 

That was the beauty of straight up Instagram – you could appear to be anyone in a photo – and now we all feel a bit jibbed that the painfully cool girl we’ve followed since the dawn of time is in fact kinda weird. 

So what’s with all the hate anyway, and how come we love it sick?

Jealousy is obviously the big green-eyed culprit: whether we admit or not, we secretly wish we were that confident, had that many followers and were invited to fancy-pants events with free champagne every night instead of sitting on the couch.

Women aren’t adverse to a bit of gossip either. Considering most people we follow are more comfortable behind their phone versus IRL, they usually act themselves or put on a bit of a show, which not only grinds our gears but provides serious bitching ammo too.

This doesn’t couple well with our insecurities either, which are heightened when we see a pretty, confident girl raving to the camera about her new must-have mascara.

It’s a fact of life that you can’t please everyone – there’ll always be someone that’s just not that into you. But I have a solution, so just hear me out. 

What if… we made a conscious effort to just chill on the hate for a sec and unfollowed the people we found annoying? Yes, unfollow!!! I know, it’s crazy, but go on, try it… tap that little green button. 

You don’t need that sort of pretty negativity in your life, or a new mascara for that matter.

Illustration by Twylamae who also makes totes and tees.

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