Irony and Sincerity are Actually Both Good

It struck me a couple days into the Every Simpsons Ever marathon.

On Twitter, I follow many people who fall into the category of “Weird Twitter.” Now, these people groan and make jokes at the very idea of a “Weird Twitter” and at any attempts to properly describe what they tweet. But I think it’s safe to say there is a lot of trafficking in irony. They’re funny.

These people fill my timeline with jokes and rants mostly based around not liking something or someone. But when The Simpsons started airing Golden Age episodes every half-hour, the mood changed. Were the people who operate so consistently in apathy and antipathy actually… ((gulp)) enjoying something?

They were! They loved The Simpsons! And they were talking about it! Put aside the fact that I love The Simpsons too, but I was quite refreshed to see Weird Tweeters (some of them, at least) expressing their approval of something.

The question must be raised: do we need more sincerity and less irony? Would we improve from expressing more of our satisfaction and approval instead of our complaints and displeasure?

First of all, I certainly don’t think life requires this all-or-nothing mindset. If you are sincere about everything and have so sense of ironic humor, you sound like a bore to be around. I don’t want to be BFFs with my grandma. But if you’re always ironic and like nothing, well, what are we going to do together?

I believe in sincerity, and truly liking things. I am going to write more “Things I Like” Thursday posts, because as I put it, “Let’s spend a little less time railing about what we hate and a little more time sharing what we love. It’s the only way a meritocracy will work.”

I also believe in irony, as un-ironic as this post is becoming. I like @mattytalks and @woodmuffin and @robdelaney and a bunch of other people who make me laugh and happy. I like the sarcastic, witty shows that are out there. God this paragraph is terrible and I want it to end now.

Where am I going with this?

Unlike Aaron Sorkin in The Newsroom (a show I like!), I don’t think we need to “overcome the terminal irony.” But as with many things, be mindful of yourself.

Don’t just speak up about the things you hate, although there is a place for that. Don’t just talk about the things you like; you are more than the things you like.

And text me. We can watch The Simpsons marathon. I have 79 episodes on the DVR that I really should watch.

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